Convention to discuss financial fall-out
In his annual report, Secretary John Prenty says that the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic has focussed the minds of the GAA on the question of the cost of running inter-county teams.
He makes the following suggestions as to how the inter-county game can be run going forward: a senior team panel of thirty-two maximum, with match-day panels of twenty-six, and all team expenses to be paid centrally, with any additional costs to be confirmed with the GAA auditor.
Mr. Prenty also proposes that inter-county teams would train three times a week maximum, which would include two training sessions and a game. The backroom teams would be confined to a maximum of twelve people.
He says that the losses caused by the Covid-19 situation will have long-lasting implications for the council: “From a Provincial Council point of view, the greatest threat we face in the new decade, because of Covid-19, will be the challenges that the lack of attendances and consequent lack of finance that the pandemic has imposed”, he comments.
Roscommon will have two new representatives on the council, with Hugh Lynn and John Carty replacing Tony Flaherty and Sean Mullaney.
No update on leagues yet
No decision has yet been made as to whether or not the GAA will be holding the National Leagues in 2021.
A scheduled start to inter-county training on January 15th was put back because of Covid-19 restrictions, and now with Level 5 being extended to March 5th, it is likely that the start to the inter-county season will be delayed further.
The All-Ireland hurling and football finals are now certain to be put back to August, with the All-Ireland club semi-finals and finals due to be delayed and completed in early 2022. That will mean that the club championship season will not start until mid-August at the earliest.
The GAA’s Covid committee will meet next Monday to discuss the situation. It’s expected that an announcement will be made early next week.