Golfers and tennis players return to warm weather in Ireland
Lifting of restrictions and bright weather create ideal conditions for play
Shane Gorman among the first to tee off at Tullamore Golf Club this morning. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho
Members of golf and tennis clubs return to the courses and courts today as the Met Éireann forecast is for near perfect conditions for play.
Golf and tennis clubs in the Republic were closed for a total of 210 days by Monday – the equivalent of 30 weeks – which equates to the highest number of days such clubs have been closed anywhere in the world.
The sports resumed in Northern Ireland on April 1st.
On Monday as sports men and women flock to the courts and fairways, conditions are almost perfect for playing either golf or tennis, according to the forecast. Predicted are very light breezes and good sunshine bringing temperatures up to about 17 degrees.
Temperatures are on a downward trend, however, from the peaks of more than 20 degrees in the west at the weekend, as those planning for outdoor activities should expect highs of between 11 and 14 degrees from Tuesday with a little more wind and occasional “April showers”, according to Met Éireann meteorologist Deirdre Lowe.
Almost 200,000 members of tennis and golf clubs will be able to get playing from Monday, as well as children’s underage (under 18s) training, in pods of a maximum of 15 for team sports. Under the guidelines, golf clubs will also be able to schedule junior camps if adhering to the pod system .
Monday’s resumption applies only to members of clubs playing on their home turf. Golfing societies and casual green fee golfers will have to wait until further easing of restrictions at a later date. The Government is due to make another announcement about the road map for easing of restrictions next week.
Golf Ireland CEO Mark Kennelly has urged all club officials and members to familiarise themselves with the protocols involved in playing safely “so that we can all play our part keeping our members and communities safe”.
Tennis Ireland and its Ulster Branch also welcomed the return to tennis, north and south, and also has safety guidelines for an incremental approach to a full reopening.
Met Éireann said it was still too soon to offer detailed predictions of bank holiday weekend weather. But Saturday would likely bring sunny spells and scattered showers, with highest temperatures of 10 to 13 degrees with light breezes.
Current indications suggest that Sunday and the early days of next week will be milder and unsettled with spells of rain or showers spreading eastwards across the country.