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open letter GAA urges fans to enjoy All-Ireland finals 'in a safe and sensible manner'

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A general view of Croke Park. Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

A general view of Croke Park. Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

A general view of Croke Park. Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

GAA president John Horan and Director-General Tom Ryan have penned an open letter to GAA supporters across the country to enjoy the All-Ireland finals that will take place over successive weekends.

Describing it as an "achievement" to get the championships "played to this juncture" the pair have reminded members and supporters of the responsibility the organisation has to show an example.

And they feel it would be a "travesty" if the positive" of the games being played" were turned into a "negative" because collective responsibility wasn't adhered to.

"As a national sporting body, we have a responsibility to not only our players and members, but to wider society too," they write.

"To that end, we are encouraging everyone to embrace and enjoy the three All-Ireland finals in the coming weeks in a safe and sensible manner."

With no families allowed to attend the games this weekend or next and supporters still prohibited from attending games, Horan and Ryan have described that situation as "unfortunate."

"While we can take precautionary measures at our venues, before, during and immediately after our fixtures in an attempt to look after those directly involved, we can’t control what happens away from the field of play in the aftermath of games.

"We learned lessons after a number of club finals that prompted us to move to shut down our remaining club fixtures.

"We are calling on all of those who support our games and teams to follow the health guidelines, practice social distancing and to exercise caution at all times while watching and indeed after the games.

"We fully appreciate this is not the norm. In fact, it goes against so much of what our games mean to people.

"However, it would be a travesty if the huge positive that has been our games would turn out to be a negative in the run-up to Christmas because we abandoned our collective responsibility to play our part.

"Help the GAA to fulfill its role by playing your part and think for a minute about how you can watch and enjoy the games with both your safety and that of others in mind over the course of what should be a memorable fortnight of games."


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