Homecomings for All-Ireland winners ruled out due to Covid restrictions

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Homecomings For All-Ireland Winners Ruled Out Due To Covid Restrictions Homecomings For All-Ireland Winners Ruled Out Due To Covid Restrictions
Authorities in Limerick and Cork had been liaising with their county board officials, with gardaí and public health experts over the last week. Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/TommyDickson
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Digital Desk Staff

Official team homecomings have been ruled out in both Cork and Limerick whatever the result of Sunday’s All-Ireland hurling final amid ongoing concerns over Covid-19.

As the Irish Examiner reports, warnings about potential super-spreader events, and the public health guidelines which limit gatherings at outdoor events to just 200, scuppered plans for any potential events.

Authorities in both counties had been liaising with their county board officials, gardaí and public health experts over the last week as they explored what could be possible in the context of public health guidelines.

It had been hoped that the non-stop open-top bus tour for Olympic gold medalist Kellie Harrington could act as a template.

A number of options were considered, including a similar non-stop open-top bus tour through Cork City, in the event of a Cork victory, and the potential for a controlled gathering in Limerick’s Gaelic Grounds, if the Treaty county won.

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While neither Cork City Council nor Limerick City and County Council would comment officially ahead of the match, it is understood that official homecomings have now been categorically ruled out.

Official statements are expected to be made once the final whistle is blown on Sunday afternoon.

Post-match activity

It follows the issuing of joint statements from public health officials, the local authorities, gardaí and the GAA in both Cork and the Mid-West urging people to limit their post-match social activity this All-Ireland final weekend, to abide by public health guidelines, to avoid overcrowded settings and to celebrate safely.

They said there is a “high risk of infection” for those not fully vaccinated if they engage in social activity contrary to public health guidelines.

They said this was down to “the social nature” of the high-profile sporting event, as well as the current case numbers in the county amid the Delta variant.

Dr Philippa White, a specialist registrar in public health medicine at the Department of Public Health HSE South, urged everyone, even those who are fully vaccinated, should still wear a mask in crowded spaces; and keep two metres away from people outside their household.

“We are all looking forward to Sunday’s game and hopefully to celebrations afterwards," she said.

“We encourage everyone to remember to socialise safely – wear a mask in crowded places, and keep two metres from people not in your household.”

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