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Sporting Bodies In Ireland React To Coronavirus Outbreak

Ireland coronavirus

Various sporting bodies in Ireland have released statements following the restrictive measures announced by An Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to try and slow the spread of the coronavirus. 

The measures include a ban on mass indoor gatherings larger than 100 people and outdoor gatherings larger than 500 people.

This afternoon, the GAA released a joint statement with the Ladies Gaelic Football Association and the Camogie Association imposing a blanket ban on all activity which will come into effect from midnight and last until March 29.

Ireland coronavirus

The Irish Amateur Boxing Association followed suit, postponing all IABA championships, competitions, clubs shows and tournaments until further notice with immediate effect.

Motorsport Ireland have also cancelled all events until March 29.

Swim Ireland have released a statement advising clubs to “cancel with immediate effect and until further notice all galas, competitions, meetings and any social or fundraising activities.

“At present the advice doesn’t impact on training, however we would advise all clubs to carefully consider if this is necessary and in line with trying to reduce social interaction.”

Meanwhile, the Golf Union of Ireland have released a statement saying that social golf and club competitions can continue. Their statement reads:

“The restrictions (from 6pm today until Sunday 29th March) do not prevent club competitions or casual rounds of golf taking place, however we need to be cogniscant of the social nature of our game and how this element of it is impacted.

“Golf is a great sport for people generally to get out and about, exercise and enjoy fresh air. It is played in an outdoor setting where the risk of contracting COVID-19 is low.

“All golf clubs should, at this time, aim to keep their members and staff safe and well.”

Basketball Ireland were the first to take action on Wednesday, suspending all basketball competitions and events with immediate effect due to the coronavirus.

The FAI met with the Department of Health this afternoon and have since released a statement announcing “the cessation of all football under its jurisdiction until March 29 inclusive”.

Following a meeting with government officials, the IRFU have also announced the suspension of all Domestic Rugby activity. It follows the PRO14 decision to postpone the remainder of this year’s competition.

“The Irish Rugby Football Union, together with Connacht, Leinster, Munster and Ulster Rugby, have announced the suspension of all Domestic Rugby activity from 6pm this evening 12th March until the 29th March (inclusive), in response to the latest Government advice on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

“Future Domestic Rugby activity will be reviewed in line with Government advice.

“All Rugby activities across Clubs and Schools, from minis to adult rugby, must now cease.

“While Rugby Clubs may wish to continue to operate facilities such as bars and function rooms they must observe Government restrictions in relation to the number of people that may attend indoor (no more than 100 people) and outdoor (no more than 500 people) events.

“We will work with clubs and schools to rearrange fixtures, such as the Schools Cup finals.”

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Author: Marisa Kennedy

Marisa is a Digital Journalist with Pundit Arena. You can contact her at marisa@punditarena.com or on Twitter