GAA Football

GAA postpones championships until "at least July"

Tyrone and Donegal were due to meet in the Ulster Championship again this summer, but that is now in doubt after the GAA confirmed it was postponing its championships until "at least July". Picture by Margaret McLaughlin

AFTER announcing the postponement of the start of the All-Ireland championships until at least July, the GAA says it will aim to accommodate both club and inter-county games if they are able to resume at some stage this year.

The extension of government lockdown restrictions at the weekend and comments made by Health Minister Simon Harris yesterday cast serious doubt on whether the championships would be played at all in 2020.

The GAA, which is planning to go ahead with its remotely-held Special Congress on Friday that will grant them powers to alter championship structures as needed, says they will be postponed “until further clarity on the situation is available.

“The GAA acknowledges last weekend's Government announcement of the extension of current restrictions until May 5th and its impact on the scheduling of sporting events and working practices, and has factored the extension of the arrangements into its contingency planning,” read a statement released last night.

“However, it is the Association's view that it is highly unlikely these will be rescheduled any time before the beginning of July, at the earliest.

“When sporting activity recommences, the GAA will accommodate both club and county games.”

The intention to finish the Allianz Leagues “where possible” remains part of the plan, although the idea of the inaugural Tailteann Cup moved further into the distance.

The new second tier football competition was due to begin this summer but with its structure based on league positions, it will almost inevitably be canned for this year.

The GAA have been widely praised for their handling of the Covid-19 situation and say that they will continue to make decisions “based on the advice of the medical professionals and the government”.

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GAA Football