John Horan welcomes GAA return but warns against complacency

GAA President John Horan has warned against complacency after Association chiefs this afternoon fast-forward their return to play roadmap for clubs.
John Horan welcomes GAA return but warns against complacency

GAA President John Horan wants members to remain 'vigilant and careful'
GAA President John Horan wants members to remain 'vigilant and careful'

GAA President John Horan has warned against complacency after Association chiefs

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Adult teams can recommence non-contact training on Wednesday next week with all other grades able to restart on Saturday.

Full contact training for all players in the Republic can begin then on Monday, June 29th - almost three weeks earlier than had been originally planned.

Competitive games can throw in from July 17, almost two weeks earlier than anticipated.

While welcoming the news which followed a meeting of the GAA’s Covid advisory committee- Horan called on all GAA members to remain ‘vigilant and careful’ to the threat posed by the coronavirus.

He also said that coaches and officials will have to partake in an e-learning module which the GAA will be issuing in the coming days before returning.

Speaking to GAA.ie Mr Horan said: "I don’t think that there is any room for complacency in this and people should carry out social distancing and washing hands and so on. People need to realise that the pandemic is still alive in parts of the world.

"It has been suppressed here in Ireland but it is not like the snow in that it has melted away and it is gone forever. There is still an element of it in the country but it is felt that it is so low in the country that we are in a safe position to return to GAA activity.

“We have always said as an organisation that we would look at, and take, our advice from the health authorities and the government and that we would be flexible.

"We have shown this flexibility in that we have moved things forward safely and carefully. But we would now call on all our membership to be vigilant and careful and not to take this return on in a complacent manner because if we do then we are going to lose out again and things will have to be stopped.”

He said that the earlier start days for games will be a boost to county administrators who are plotting a return to competitive action in an extremely condensed timeframe.

He told GAA.ie: “We are bringing forward the date from which the County Boards can schedule fixtures to July 17th (from July 31st) and that will reduce the compression of returning to fixtures and will also allow a little bit more leeway in terms of allowing matches to be played.”

He added: The dates that we originally set for intercounty (is not changed) … the resumption to training on September 14 with games from October 17, that remains in place.” The GAA president also welcomed the announcement on Friday night that the Government has earmarked €70 million in funding to assist Irish sport decimated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We were delighted,” he added. “We have been very honest about the financial impact that this pandemic has had on us as an Association and the loss of our gate receipts in particular. We are greatly appreciative of what the government has put on the table.”

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