Antrim County Board propose February/April league start

THE Antrim Competitions Control Committees have told club managers that they want the leagues to begin at the start of the spring.

The CCC sent the message out recently that after a meeting they had set the football competition to throw-in on Sunday, February 28, and the hurling competition to begin on April 11.

The announcement has been met with some confusion by those players and managers who were contacted by Gaelic Life.

The confusion comes from the fact that the GAA had called for a split-season this year. With the Inter-county competitions to take place during the first seven months of the year, and the club championships to get a clear run from August onwards.

Were the leagues to go ahead in February for the footballers, this would leave club teams in a predicament. They are currently not allowed to train collectively, and the date of their return to any such collective training is up in the air because of the Covid-19 pandemic and the restrictions that the Irish and the Stormont governments have placed upon sports teams meeting up.

With that in mind, the players and managers that Gaelic Life contacted this week felt that it was unlikely that any such date in February for football, or April for hurling, would be met.

There is a further issue with an early start to club leagues and that is the effect that it would have on the county teams. Enda McGinley has taken over as new manager of Antrim, and if club leagues were to go ahead in February then he may face a challenge of not having a full squad available to him as some of his players may opt to play for their clubs in the leagues, rather than committing fully to the county.

The Antrim County Board were contacted this week for a response.

Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere


Gaelic Life is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 10-14 John Street, Omagh, Co. Tyrone, N. Ireland, BT781DW