2021 is proving to be a difficult time regarding selection and organisation for our youth, espoirs, men, women and veteran international teams due to current restrictions of the COVID pandemic.
Our National Performance Panel (NPP) has produced a risk assessment for our teams who may be attending any of the CEP (European) and FIPJP (World) Events in 2021.
These are currently scheduled in June, July, September, November and December and there are many questions which still need to be answered. Some of these questions may not be able to be answered until closer to the time of the event.
We have not heard any firm proposals yet from our European and World bodies as to whether or how they might hold the scheduled major international tournaments that involve representation of up to 40 or more countries.
However, with this in mind and the fact that there will need to be a lot of organising and training needed before the respective events, NPP has decided at a virtual meeting held on 4th February 2021 that the following guidelines for team participation will apply immediately until further notice.
Three (3) months before the event the following conditions must be in place:
- We must be playing organised competitive pétanque in England.
- The event team must have been selected and any necessary preparations must be in place.
- The team must be able to attend the event:
- without having any quarantine requirements at the venue before the event. (PE will not be able to meet the costs of any quarantine requirements prior to an event and we feel that such quarantine requirements which tend to be 10 days will not be practically possible for our players and officials); and
- without having a COVID test to attend the event or on returning to the UK. (The latest Government regulations issued this week require a COVID PCR test 72 hours before travel both on leaving the UK and returning to it. Additionally, on return players would be required to self-isolate at home for 10 days and undergo two further PCR tests at two and eight days following return. PE is not in a position to fund these tests and we are equally concerned that there is a substantial risk that positive tests just prior to departure will mean the team not being able to travel meaning associated abortive costs may not be able to be recovered. Equally, a positive COVID test in the host country would leave our players and/or officials subject to a 10-day period of self-isolation away from home).
We need to make these decisions now not only for the safety for our members but also because of the practical organisational and financial constraints we face.
Having set these requirements now, the COVID-19 pandemic has seen significant changes both for the better and for the worse over the last 12 months. The situation can change rapidly, and we will keep all risks and financial implications under constant review. This review may also include any possible relaxations of our International representation requirements if we consider them to be justified.
Members present at NPP meeting taking this decision:
Clive de Silva (President & Veterans Lead)
Scott Ashby (Male Youth Coach)
Toni Gates (Lead Member for Youth)
Martin Hughes (Vice President & Lead Member for Men)
Rowland Jones (Lead Member for Women/Female Youth Coach)
Paul Lancaster (Lead Member/Coach for Female Espoirs)
Colin Roper (Lead Member/Coach for Male Espoirs)
Barry Wing (Chair PE Events Group)