Football and cricket authorities welcome announcement, but doubts are cast over rugby’s return
Last Updated: 10/07/20 8:10pm
Team sport in Wales has been given the go-ahead to resume from Monday 13 July by the country’s First Minister, Mark Drakeford.
Up until now only non-team sports had been allowed to take place below elite level, but Friday’s announcement paves the way for recreational matches, involving groups of up to 30 people outdoors, to take place once more.
Outdoor fitness classes, such as dance sessions will also be allowed to go ahead.
Mr Drakeford said it would be up to individual sports’ governing bodies to set out how they would return.
“They [guidelines] allow low-contact sport, so football is okay,” he said. “A rugby scrum is a different matter. Coronavirus would be very happy indeed to see people doing that, so that will not be part of what we are reopening.
“The advice and the guidelines will come from the governing bodies of those sports.”
The Football Association of Wales said they welcomed the message from Welsh Government.
A statement on their website read: “The FAW and FAW Trust await the revised Welsh Government’s Coronavirus Regulations together with the Welsh Government’s updated guidance and will be working through the changes to translate this into easily understandable information to advise both clubs and individuals as soon as possible.
“The FAW continues to work with Welsh Government and Sport Wales to develop a phased approach for the return of football in Wales.”
Cricket Wales CEO, Leshia Hawkins also welcomed the decision.
“We are absolutely thrilled with the news today, and as I know the Cricket Family in Wales will be. There has been an extraordinary amount of work by Cricket Wales staff and Club and League volunteers behind the scenes over the last few months to get us to today I must say a huge thank you to them.
“My team and I will now urgently work with colleagues at the England & Wales Cricket Board, to analyse the detail of the written guidance from Welsh Government on sport’s return, when it is issued, and ensure that the guidance for Cricket in Wales is signed off and published as soon as is possible.
“I look forward to seeing as many people as possible, especially kids, out there playing and enjoying their cricket this summer.”