Crowds of up to 500 will be allowed at sporting events in Northern Ireland from Monday

Ireland women’s cricket team will benefit for series against Scotland

Up to a maximum of 500 spectators will be allowed at sporting events in Northern Ireland from Monday under the further reducing of Covid-19 restrictions. At present a cap of 100 spectators exists.

Ulster GAA released a statement on Friday evening, outlining the new guidelines across a broad range of activities from intercounty to club, including protocols surrounding gyms, sports halls and social events. Face coverings will not be mandatory at matches, although the statement says that “in interests of risk minimisation it is strongly encouraged that they are worn by all”.

Spectators are also asked to being their own hand sanitiser and not to enter the field of play at any time.

The GAA will issue guidance to counties early next week in relation to the attendance of spectators at Allianz League games in the North.

The Ireland women’s cricket team will benefit from the lifting of restrictions for the second game of their T20 international series against Scotland at Stormont.

The series gets underway at the Belfast venue on Sunday, with spectators returning for the second game on Monday at 1pm. The two teams also meet on Wednesday and Thursday at the same venue.

The Ireland women’s team last played a game in September 2019, when they beat Papua New Guinea in the third-place playoff at the ICC Women’s World cup Qualifier in Dundee.

"Having spectators back at games is something we are greatly looking forward to, but I think I can speak for all Irish cricket fans when I say we are probably more excited to see the Ireland women's team back playing international cricket after 624 days," said Cricket Ireland chief executive Warren Deutrom.

The entry fee for matches at which spectators can attend will be £3, with all revenue raised from entry fees going to support the work of The Hope Foundation – Cricket Ireland’s official charity partner.

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