A Club Players Association survey has shown that over a fifth of GAA players are unwilling to return to training before a Covid-19 vaccine is found. 

On Sunday night, GAA president John Horan told The Sunday Game that he does not expect football or hurling to resume while social distancing measures are in place. 

"If social distancing is a priority to deal with this pandemic, I don't know how we can play a contact sport," said Horan. "That is what Gaelic games is. It is a contact sport."

On Wednesday, the CPA released the results of a questionnaire that gauged players' opinions on getting back to action. It was completed by 3,008 players. 

The results show that 57% are prepared to return to playing this year, 22% are not prepared to return and 21% don’t know at this stage, with 64% saying they'd train or play if there was temperature checking in place.

In addition, 61% said they are prepared to attend club games while 34% would attend inter-county games.

Of those surveyed, 27% live with a person over 70 years of age or a vulnerable individual.

"The survey results indicate that a significant number of club players believe that until games are safe, they do not want to play," said CPA chairman Micheál Briody.

"It presents a challenge for the future of the GAA but one we feel that as a community of players and members we can face and surmount together.

"We have sent a copy of the survey results to Ard Stiúrthóir Tom Ryan so he could pass it onto the Covid-19 Advisory Group.

"We have also indicated to him that we will make available our database of members to the Advisory Group should they wish to survey or communicate with club players on any point in their deliberations.

"There has been a phenomenal voluntary effort at club level to assist elderly and vulnerable people in the fight against Covid-19.

"The GAA as an association has shown real leadership.

"It is further evidence of the importance of the grassroots GAA to the fabric of Irish society and further highlights the need for the games to be more community-centric going forward."

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