Cork GAA club championships postponed as Páirc Uí Chaoimh is made available to help the HSE battle Coronavirus

Cork GAA club championships postponed as Páirc Uí Chaoimh is made available to help the HSE battle Coronavirus
Recent action from the Cork and Derry Allianz football league division 3, round 5 game at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

THE executive of Cork County Board has made the decision to postpone all first-round county senior and intermediate championship games as well as the county stages of U21 football and junior B and C competitions.

The games had been scheduled for the ‘club month’ of April and the first two weekends in May, but are now postponed en bloc.

County chairperson Tracey Kennedy stressed that public safety was the priority for the executive in making this decision.

"We wanted to ensure that clubs or players didn't feel any pressure to try to return to training or even get together in small groups, as might possibly have happened if they thought they'd be playing games in April," she said.

"This is a time of great uncertainty for us all, and the GAA community must do our bit to try to stop the spread of Covid-19. Sport is important to us all, but pales into insignificance in the current situation when the lives and livelihoods of our families and friends are at risk.

"When the situation becomes clearer, we'll see where we are and make whatever changes are necessary to complete this year's competitions."

Kennedy also confirmed that the board has made Páirc Uí Chaoimh available for use by the Health Service Executive.

"Making Páirc Uí Chaoimh available to the HSE is one small gesture we were glad to make," she said.

"They may decide to make use of it or they may not, but it will be there for the duration of this crisis and hopefully this will help in some way." 

In a statement to clubs, the board confirmed that the scheduling and format of the county championships is now subject to review, in consultation with Munster Council, the National Competitions Control Committee and clubs.

All other games and activities, including those under the jurisdiction of Rebel Óg, remain suspended as per GAA directive and advice from the HSE and Department of Health. Club league regulations and completion dates will also be reviewed once a resumption of activities is confirmed.

The offices at Páirc Uí Chaoimh will be closed until such time as current restrictions are lifted. County board staff will work remotely and are contactable by email or via the office phone (021-4963311) as normal. This has been diverted to a staff member's phone and will be answered during office hours.

The county board meeting scheduled for April 7 has been cancelled. The executive and CCC will continue to meet regularly via video-conference and will provide a report to clubs by email after all meetings.

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