INTER-COUNTY minor and U-20 squads have received some long-awaited clarity with confirmation that they can resume full-contact training from next Monday and that games in these age grades can take place from June 7.
Croke Park has also revealed that the Central Competition Controls Committee will soon unveil a schedule for completing those 2020 underage championships that are still outstanding, along with dates for this year’s competitions.
A ‘Covid update’ from GAA president Larry McCarthy and director-general Tom Ryan has provided further information for counties and clubs as more public health restrictions are eased over the coming weeks.
Some of the changes – such as clearance for senior inter-county challenge matches from next Monday and for non-playing county panellists to attend league matches from this weekend – had been flagged already yesterday evening.
However, the updated position on underage county activity will be particularly welcomed by players who have been left waiting for months, wondering when they’ll receive the green light to train and to play.
“Training for both 2020 and 2021 minor and U-20 squads can begin from next Monday, May 10 on a full contact basis,” the Croke Park circular states. “Games in these cohorts will be permitted from June 7. In the coming days, the CCCC will publish a schedule for both the completion of 2020 competitions and dates for 2021 inter-county competitions at minor and U20.”
Three U-20 championships – the minor hurling, minor football and U20 hurling – have yet to be completed.
Munster U-20 HC winners Cork have qualified for the All-Ireland final where they will face the Leinster champions, either Galway or Dublin. The Leinster MHC final (between Kilkenny and Offaly) is also outstanding while Galway face Limerick in an All-Ireland semi-final.
The minor football championship is less advanced, with games still outstanding in Ulster and Leinster, whereas the Connacht and Munster SFC titles have been won by Roscommon and Kerry respectively.