Central Council are strongly considering reinstating intercounty pre-season competitions as part of another change to the annual GAA calendar in 2022.
The Fixtures Task Force Calendar Review Committee recommended bringing and end to the various different provincial pre-season competitions, that traditionally take place prior to the start of the league, in November 2020.
That recommendation was acted upon and saw football’s O’Byrne, McGrath and McKenna Cup and Connacht League halted, along with hurling’s Walsh and Kehoe Cups and Munster League.
That ruling was made on the basis that training was not permitted to proceed until January 1. However, intercounty set-ups can now return to collective training on December 15 with challenge matches allowed from the first day of the new year.
The return of the pre-season competitions would potentially only last for three weekends in January and is not seen as an issue by the Central Council or intercounty panels alike.
That is despite the fact that the O’Byrne and McKenna Cup and the Munster League had been starting in December in an effort to complete all round-robin fixtures that the respective competitions entail.
The potential resumption of these competitions will be discussed by Central Council delegates on Saturday with management set-ups voicing their support for competitive fixtures early in the year rather than challenge matches that would be taking place on the same dates under the current structure.