COMPETITIVE sport has been given the green light to resume today (June 1), for the first time since mid-March, as part of the government’s phased loosening of coronavirus restrictions.

Competitions must take place behind closed doors, and it is up to individual sports to assess the risk, and consult athletes, coaches and support staff.

Horse racing and snooker resumed action on Monday, while football fans can look forward to the return of the Premier League on June 17 and Championship on June 20.

Silverstone is expected to host two Formula 1 races this summer, while a ‘Battle of the Brits’ exhibition tournament will mark the return of professional tennis in the UK.

The government has also said that people in England can exercise outside with up to five others from different households from Monday, provided that social distancing guidelines are followed.

This means people who play team sports can meet to train together and for fitness sessions, although physical contact is not allowed.

More guidance can be found here.


THE Verde Recreo Men's Hockey League has proposed a later start and later finish to the 2020/21 season, to allow more of the government's coronavirus restrictions to be lifted.

The proposed season start date would be October 24, 2020, with fixtures running through to December 12, 2020.

Following a break for Christmas, matches would restart on January 16, 2021, and run through to March 27, 2021, ahead of the Easter break.

The final block of fixtures would then take place between April 10, 2021, and April 24, 2021.

A league statement said: "It is the league committee's preference that we attempt to run a ‘normal’ season in 2020/21.

"Clearly, though, we have to be guided by government and governing body advice in doing so.

"After careful consideration we are proposing a later start and later finish to the 2020/21 season.

"This is in order to allow as many restrictions as possible which are currently in place to be lifted."

A "firm decision" on whether the league will proceed with this preferred option, or default to a 'plan B', will be made next month (July 18) - and so no fixtures will be published until early August.

The statement also added that "provision has been made for potentially playing into May if necessary, in order to maximise the chances of completing a full season".

Should a club need to withdraw a team (or teams), "they will receive no sanction for doing so and would be eligible to re-enter the side(s) ahead of the 2021/22 season".