Sporting activities resume amidst Covid-19 speaks of hope in both worlds

Sporting activities such as football have now restarted following several months of inactivity as countries suspended games as the world grapples with Covid-19.

Malawi playing Zimbabwe in an international friendly at Kamuzu Stadium in Blantyre

This weekend, following an international break, football games in different leagues that have restarted games will pick up from where the excitement stopped for the 2020/2021 season. Not that international games are without spark. Rather, the aura of excitement that domestic leagues bring is unexplainable and magical.

This excitement cuts even across borders. It is therefore clear the impact of this outbreak has not left any sporting lover unreeling. The suspension of games and several other sporting activities even hit people in locations you probably could not imagine. Sports is indeed a globalized constituency.

But regardless of how dark the night is, there is always hope of dawn. Of course, as there is not confirmed cure or vaccine against the Coronavirus disease, the resumption of sports sets humanity on a path of hope.

Now, people from all walks will be able to follow and support their teams and even place bets on online casinos and sportsbooks to get the best of both worlds for regular players within the comfort of their homes on all popular sporting activities and games.

It is understood that 99.9% of a sporting fanbase exists outside of the stadium — whether it’s through TV or online which is now a dominant force for accessing following sports.

The resumption of games is being piloted in phases as adapting to new circumstances is not an easy mountain to climb.

The United Nations considers sport as “a major contributor to economic and social development”. Its role is well recognized by Governments, including in the Political Declaration of the 2030 Agenda, which reflects on “the contribution sports make to the empowerment of women and of young people, individuals and communities, as well as to health, education and social inclusion objectives.”

To safeguard the health of athletes and others involved, most major sporting events at international, regional and national levels were either cancelled or postponed – from marathons to football tournaments, athletics championships to basketball games, handball to ice hockey, rugby, cricket, sailing, skiing, weightlifting to wrestling and more.

The Olympics and Paralympics, for the first time in the history of the modern games, have been postponed. The International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) executive board announced that the games will be held in July 2021.

With the role that sports play as acknowledged by the UN, several bodies continue to explore innovative ways and opportunities return to what has been described as the new norm.

In Canada, Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference says it is working on a plan to safely deliver sport under strict protocols and that a task force has been developed to explore all options to proceed with competitions that will even allow teams to withdraw from a sport competition at any time without penalty.

The ACAC conference council also unanimously decided to withdraw from participation in all 2021 Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) National Championships.

“The health concerns and logistical complexities involved in pan-provincial travel for ACAC student-athletes and teams was determined to be an unnecessary and unwarranted risk under the current conditions of the pandemic,” read a media release from the ACAC.

Whereas the Athletics South Africa (ASA) announced on Friday that will resume training and controlled competition activity from 1 November 2020 in line with that country’s strict Covid-19 medical and safety protocols of the South Africa National Disaster Act.

“We are also entering a new era as an athletics family in the country as we begin to claw our way back to an unknown future under a new order of sporting life,” said Aleck Skhosana, President of ASA.

“However, while we look at returning to partial activity under the new order of things, let us not forget that the priority is still to first save lives since the Corona virus is still very much with us”.

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