Elite sport can continue in England

Professional sport in England can continue behind closed doors, despite a new national lockdown announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

It means Premier League football and elite leagues in other sports are allowed to carry on.

What does the new lockdown mean for sport in England?

The UK government published its guidance for England’s new national lockdown shortly after the prime minister’s televised address at 20:00 GMT.

Here are the points relating to sport and physical activity:

  • Elite sportspeople (and their coaches if necessary, or parents/guardians if they are under 18) – or those on an official elite sports pathway – to compete and train
  • Indoor gyms and sports facilities will remain closed
  • Outdoor sports courts, outdoor gyms, golf courses, outdoor swimming pools, archery/driving/shooting ranges and riding arenas must also close
  • Organised outdoor sport for disabled people is allowed to continue

While golfing has been allowed to continue in Scotland under strict rules, courses will be closed in England.

England Golf said it was “extremely disappointed” with the decision, adding it had made a “strong case” to keep the sport open in recent months.

However, the beleaguered retail betting sector suffered another setback as all non-essential retail must close under England’s new lockdown, meaning the remaining betting shops open in formerly Tier 3 areas must shut. So check out the top 10 online casinos UK.

While the economic blow from the complete closure of betting shops will cost racing in the region of £12.5 million per month, the continuation of live sport – and hence revenue from online bookmakers – is a vital economic lifeline for the industry, which employs in the region of 20,000 people, mainly in rural areas.

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