Mon, 30 Mar 2020 00:00
Following the statement from the LTA last week, we wanted to get in touch with you about how this affects the County Tier National League 2020 season.
The absolute priority of everyone in Britain needs to be protecting the health of the nation, with a requirement to dramatically adjust our behaviour to help slow the spread of the disease, prevent the NHS from being overwhelmed, and ultimately save lives. The way everyone can do this is complying with the Government’s guidance and staying at home.
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on Monday evening (23 March) all tennis facilities and courts should be closed, and tennis coaching and activity should be put on hold with immediate effect.
As a result, the LTA have now extended the cancellation of all LTA staged and LTA approved competitions (grade 1 to 6) up to and including 31 May 2020. Therefore, no National League fixtures up to 31 May 2020 can take place. Based on this new date we can update you with the following:
- All County Tier junior age groups are currently on hold. Although no County Tier fixtures can take place before the end of May, we are very hopeful that the junior age groups (8U-18U) can take place later on this summer. The main reason for this is due to their being no national finals or promotion/relegation in these age groups, and we can potentially look at extending the season further. We will send out further information on this once the options have been discussed with the LTA and the County, and particularly when the situation around Covid-19 becomes a little clearer. However, in summary, we are very hopeful that all junior age groups will still go ahead.
- In line with the above, our VMH Solicitors East of Scotland Leagues are also currently on hold up to 31 May 2020. The East Board is exploring options to reschedule fixtures although, understandably, none of us can have any definite plans at this moment. The LTA is encouraging us to think positively and will review the possibilities nearer to 31 May. We will, of course, keep you informed.
- District Affiliations – during this time of uncertainty we will not be invoicing for affiliation until the picture is clearer. Depending/if the VMH Solicitors leagues go ahead and we have a confirmed start date – this will be part of determining the final fees.
It is obviously a very difficult and uncertain time for everyone at the moment. We want to do everything we can to ensure that our leagues remain for the time being, and potentially take place later in the summer.
During these challenging times for our society, the LTA’s focus over the coming weeks will be to ensure tennis coaches, venues, volunteers, officials and players are supported in any way they can be, so that tennis in Britain emerges from this period in as strong and healthy position as possible, and the sport is able to resume its role in keeping the nation active. They are continuing to work with Government to help us achieve this, and establishing what further support can be provided to help all those impacted by this unprecedented situation.
The LTA now has dedicated coronavirus pages for venues, coaches and players, as well as FAQ pages in relation to competitions for players. All our coronavirus information is accessible at www.lta.org.uk/coronavirus. The direct link to the FAQs for officials can be found here.
Thank you all once again for your continued support and understanding. I will be in touch again soon but if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.