We’ve had some time now to digest the details of yesterday’s announcements and let’s not sugar-coat it, it wasn’t what we wanted to hear as a nation, or as golfers.
That said, the communication of the messaging was a little better and we did get a chink of hope in that selected outdoor sports will be considered for April 5th. What I take from this is that outdoor sports of any description weren’t even on the table this time around, regardless of the 44 proposals that Government received in relation to them. We never had a chance.
So, let’s focus our sights on a 5th of April target as we now know that this is when we can realistically expect to see some positive news. Golf Ireland have been criticised for being quiet up to now but perhaps they knew this all along? Regardless, now is clearly the time for the Governing bodies of Sport Ireland and Golf Ireland to flex some muscle and really put pressure on Government to stick to their word and get sport back open.
If we can get the numbers down, there is absolutely no reason why sports like golf, tennis and fishing etc. can’t return. At present, councils around the Dublin area are closing public amenities and parks due to overcrowding – where are these folks supposed to go… Home? Have a run around the garden?
Golf courses will take significant numbers of people off the streets and out of the parks and put them in a covid-controlled environment where they can play the game they love, improve their mental and physical well-being and also kick-start a flailing section of the economy. So let’s get this done.
As golfers, we need to do our part too. Let’s contact our local TD’s and preach the ‘golf is safe’ message. Pre-booked tee times, 10-12 minute intervals, arrive just before your tee time, arrive ready to play, have your game and then head home. Add to this that there are countless scientific studies showing the health benefits of playing golf. Let’s give them no choice but to open the game, and others like it.
Let’s also contact our golf clubs. Talk to them. If you’re struggling to pay your annual sub, let them know. If you can pay it, then do pay it. They need it. I appreciate that we all need it but if you’re planning on playing this year, then you should be planning on paying, too.
While you do all of this, just think, you could be on the fairways come April 5th which incidentally is the Monday of Masters week….it’s written in the stars!