Revealed: Ladies GAA publish surveys conducted with key stakeholders

Divided opinion on a return to action in 2020

Express Sport Reporter

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Revealed: Ladies GAA publish surveys conducted with key stakeholders

The Ladies Gaelic Football Association can reveal the findings of an extensive consultation process with key stakeholders.

Last weekend, the LGFA sought the views of county and club players, county managers, club and county board officers, and referees, through a series of surveys.

There were 356 county players, 2060 club players, 23 county managers and 17 national referees were among those that took part.

Of those surveyed, 51 percent felt there was a possibility of football being played in 2020 and 91 percent would be open to playing behind closed doors (see graphic below).

The LGFA hopes to be in a position to play some club and inter-county games this year, subject to public health guidelines.

As it is unlikely that inter-county games will be played before October at the earliest, the LGFA is now recommending that inter-county training should cease for now, and only resume when it is advised to do so.  

The LGFA will continue to adhere to best practice in relation to Covid-19, and the Association will be guided at all times by the Government and public health authorities.

When the situation becomes clearer, there will be a phased resumption of training at both club and county levels, to allow players to prepare for a return to play.

The LGFA will work closely with the GAA in the formulation of these return-to-play protocols, which will be activated only when it is safe to do so.

LGFA President Marie Hickey commented: “I would like to thank all of our stakeholders who engaged in the surveys that were sent out, and completed last weekend.

“The various responses made for interesting reading and it was important to gauge the views of players, managers, referees and officials.

“We all look forward to the time when we can safely return to training and playing games.

“Until then, I would once again urge all of our members to continue adhering to current Covid-19 guidelines, and I wish everybody well during these challenging and unprecedented times.”

Here are some of the challenges faced, in the opinion of those who added feedback.


From players:
• Sharing equipment and dressing rooms
• Close proximity on pitch
• Fitness levels
• Risk of spreading or contracting virus
• Transport to and from venues

Referees:
• Family safety
• Getting umpires
• Close contact with players and mentors
• Too many games
• Social distancing

Managers:
• Safety of players, mentors and families
• Clubs releasing players
• Social distancing
• Many players are front line workers
• Access to facilities

County Board:
• Social distancing at venues
• Restructuring competitions
• Confidence in safety
• Getting referees
• Access to facilities

Club Executives:
• Social distancing - especially kids
• Players not willing to play
• Dressing room access
• Costs for sanitizer etc.
• Evenings getting darker later in year

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