GAA to press on with league plans despite concerns over cancellation

The GAA has already abandoned plans for football league finals but hopes to complete the two final rounds of fixtures

The GAA will continue with plans to conclude the National League season in October, after speculation that the competition would be cancelled.

The final two rounds of league fixtures are scheduled to be played from 17 October before the Championship takes centre stage from the end of the month.

Rising Covid-19 cases across Ireland had led to rumours that the Association might cancel the plans in order to focus all efforts on the upcoming Championship.

However following a meeting with its county chairpersons on Thursday evening, a decision to carry on as planned was taken.

If a team cannot play a game, the fixtures will be forfeited as opposed to rescheduled.

For counties such as Fermanagh and Armagh, who both reported multiple positive Covid-19 cases within their inter-county squads this week, the rule could see their promotion pushes cancelled if they are unable to field a side in less than two weeks.

Having been brought to an abrupt halt by the pandemic in March, the Association hopes to play the 30 outstanding football league fixtures, and three divisional hurling finals, before starting the All-Ireland Championships which this year have reverted to a straight knockout format.

This was supposed to happen upon conclusion of the 11-week club championship window, which was suspended this week in the interests of public health.

The GAA is planning a rapid testing system for the inter-county Championship, in the hope of minimising disruption to the schedule.

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