WATCH: Appeal to Limerick hurling fans to play their part this weekend to prevent spread of Covid-19

The Department of Public Health Mid-West, Limerick GAA, An Garda Síochána, and Limerick City and County Council have come together to urge members of the public to support the Limerick hurlers responsibly this Sunday.

In a joint statement, the various agencies acknowledge that the All Ireland final against Waterford at Croke Park will be a momentous and historic occasion for Limerick.

However, fans and casual supporters are being reminded that we are not living in normal times due to the Covid-19 pandemic and members of the public are being urged to to avoid large social gatherings, unnecessary household visits, house parties, and any situation that makes you or loved ones vulnerable to infection. 

Sunday's final will be played behind closed doors and fans will instead will have to follow it on TV, radio or online.

Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, Cllr Michael Collins, is urging Limerick supporters to enjoy the match in a safe and responsible way this Sunday.

“All of us are looking forward to Sunday and I would urge all supporters to enjoy the match but to do so in a safe and responsible way. Fingers crossed Limerick will be victorious and we can look forward to marking our hurlers achievements throughout this season in 2021. By supporting our boys in green in a responsible way, we are also supporting our health service and protecting our families this Christmas.”

Dr Mai Mannix, Director of Public Health Mid-West, said that large social gatherings, unnecessary household visits, and house parties are all extremely high-risk settings and that such activities could undo months of huge efforts to stop the spread of Covid-19 across Limerick.

"The people of Limerick have shown on numerous occasions how a county with high incidence rates of Covid-19 can bring numbers of cases to low numbers when communities band together by adhering to public health advice. We all want the Liam MacCarthy trophy back home this Christmas, but we also want a safe and healthy one that is not marred by the separation of loved ones due to Covid-19. And while we ask the public to support the senior hurlers responsibly, we also ask businesses to implement effective measures to ensure their staff and customers are protected this weekend.”

John Kiely, Manager of the Limerick Senior Hurling team, said: "2020 has been a year like no other. But we still have our All-Ireland Final. Everyone wants to finish the year on a high and we are asking everyone to help us do exactly that. This year we are all on the Limerick team and I am asking you to play your part off the pitch by keeping each other safe and following all public health guidelines.”

Sean Finn, a member of the panel, added: “We are the lucky ones taking to the field at Croke Park for the final but we all have a role to play no matter where we are. On behalf of the Limerick team, please play your part off the pitch and make sure you follow public health guidelines during and after the final. Enjoy the game and stay safe.”

Limerick County Board Chairman, John Cregan said 2020 has been a challenging year for a lot of people and it’s fantastic that our senior hurlers have helped to lift the mood of the county with their appearance in Sunday’s decider. 

"While the current regulations do not permit spectators we must hope that by staying apart and by adhering to current guidelines we hope to return to what is the norm for next season. Limerick have some of the most passionate supporters in the country and I know they will be back in stadiums as soon as public health guidelines allow. In the mean time in the build up to the final and on match day please continue to protect yourselves and protect each other at all times,” he said.

Chief Superintendent Gerard Roche, of Limerick Garda Division, says everyone must do their part to reduce the spread of Covid-19. “Regardless of the outcome of the match, it is vital that we all continue to limit our contact with each other. Please, before and after the game, do not gather in groups. Stay safe and continue to play your part in stopping the spread of Covid-19.”  

People can limit their risk of contracting COVID-19 by doing the following:

  • Wearing a mask
  • Keeping a distance of at least two metres
  • Reduce your social contacts; meet up with a small number of people, and not in large groups
  • Washing hands regularly

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