Golf returns to Republic of Ireland on May 18
The Golfing Union of Ireland has released guidelines for the safe return of golf to the Republic of Ireland.
Last week it was announced that the sport may return on a limited basis from May 18.
Club members can play in three balls at 14 minute intervals, two balls at 12 minute intervals, or as individual players every 10 minutes.
The document is part of a five-phase plan for the return of golf in the Republic after closure due to coronavirus.
A plan for the safe resumption of golf in Northern Ireland has not yet been decided by the British government and the NI Executive.
While clubs in Northern Ireland await instructions, the GUI and the Irish Ladies Golf Union have urged golfers to adhere closely to the protocols in their five-phase plan.
The plan was unveiled following extensive union cooperation with the Irish government, which published its roadmap for reopening society and business on May 18 last week.
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"As one of the first sports to resume, there is a great responsibility among golf clubs and golfers to ensure that our sport is practiced in a safe and responsible manner, "the unions said in a statement.
"Full compliance with the provisions of this Protocol is absolutely essential.
" It should be noted that the government continues to monitor the situation closely and has not ruled out the possibility of reintroducing restrictions to golf clubs could close again if the protocol is not respected. "
Only" casual golf "will be played by groups of no more than three members until phase two begins on June 8, when closed club competitions return.
During phase one, only golfers who enter live, play five kilometers from the club, this will be extended to 20 kilometers on June 8, with visitors possibly allowed from June 29.
In the third stage, open leagues may return on June 29 while booking Starting times for all five phases must be done in advance online or by phone.
Clubhouses remain closed with pro shops opening for check-ins, while changing rooms reopen for golf equipment collection, and sanitary facilities reopen.
Golf in & # 39; very privileged position & # 39;
The unions emphasized that it is the job of golfers to demonstrate that golf is in a & # 39; safe, socially distant a fstand & # 39; can return while admitting that the sport is in a "very privileged position to return at this stage".
They also urged people with Covid-19 symptoms to stay away from the golf course and clubhouse.
"All clubs, golfers and staff have a shared responsibility to ensure compliance with the protocol," the statement said.
"We ask that clubs undertake to apply the protocol by signing up via the link sent to the club by email.
" We are aware that there are several other unofficial guidelines in circulation. These documents have not been reviewed by the relevant government and government agencies. Golf clubs and golfers should therefore only adhere to the protocol published by the GUI and ILGU.
"The ongoing public health emergency in Covid-19 remains our primary concern and our top priority. The unions recognize the tremendous efforts of all frontline workers who have enabled golf and society at large to consider this gradual return to normal life. "
The full document on the safe return of golf to the Republic can be read here.