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First steps for shinty's return being taken but still long way to go

By Gavin Musgrove

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The return of shinty is still some way off but the first steps are being taken towards action on the pitch, the sport's governing body has said.

The Camanachd Association is advising all shinty clubs to continue to follow government guidance.

Whilst First Minister Nicola Sturgeon yesterday signalled a return for non-contact sports including tennis, golf, fishing and bowls from the end of next week, contact sports are still expected to be off-limits for some time to come.

The association has said it will be using the next few weeks to developed a 'route map' for shinty clubs for a return to playing the game.

Contact sports including shinty are still a long way from returning but the first steps are now being taken.
Contact sports including shinty are still a long way from returning but the first steps are now being taken.

Derek Keir, Chief Executive Officer of the Camanachd Association, said: "There is a lot of new information to consider and our plan is to work through the government guidance alongside a number of other team sports and prepare some information for clubs' consideration that will support their understanding through the phases of the planned exit from lockdown.

"We also plan to release a questionnaire in the coming weeks to help us better understand the impact that Covid-19 has had on shinty clubs and we will use this to further inform our planning to support clubs.

"It will also further inform our feedback to Scottish Government regarding the impact Covid-19 has had on shinty, sponsors for our sport and participation.

"We are clearly still some way from returning to contact sport but it is especially heartening to see and read about the many efforts of shinty clubs across Scotland some of which are profiled on our website."

Mr Keir said clubs are continuing to play a key role in their communities through member and community engagement through volunteering, fundraising, individual sporting challenges, online team training, sports quizes or a variety of other innovative actions.

He said: "Well done to all of the clubs that have played a role in that and for your continued support of shinty. We are advising all clubs to continue to follow government guidance and if they have any questions on this or any other activities to contact their local development officer."

The Camanachd Association board is due to meet this Thursday to discuss further the way out of lockdown for the game.

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