John Treacy, the CEO of the Sport Ireland, has praised Irish sporting bodies for their work in safely returning to action following the outbreak of Covid-19.

But the Waterford-native, speaking on RTÉ 2's Game On, urged caution in the weeks and months ahead.

Golf courses reopened in mid-May, but training and challenge matches in contact sports have only officially returned in the last week.

GAA club championships are expected to resume in most counties by the end of this month, while the FAI earlier on Thursday gave their backing to a plan to resume the League of Ireland on 31 July.

"All the sports developed very detailed protocols about getting people back into sport," said Treacy.

"We're into phase 3 now (of the government's lockdown easing plan), so we're looking at small crowds indoors, and 200 (people) outdoors.

"The guidance is that you can start your competitions, but do it very gradually, and most of the sports are taking a very reasonable approach to it.

"They don't want anyone getting injured by jumping into competitive sports too quickly. What they're doing now is allowing the training, and allowing the contact, and getting back into it gradually.

"Sport has led the way in terms of how we resume, but the message there is be very cautions. That's the approach that the sports are taking. That's the message from the expert group as well.

"Be cautious, be aware, and let's take things slowly and not rush in and put people in danger."

The government announced last month that a fund of €70 million would be available to various sporting organisations in Ireland.

The GAA, IRFU, and the FAI will receive the majority of that sum - €40 million - between them, while a €15 million fund is included to protect clubs in financial difficulty because of the pandemic.

"We don't want sports clubs disappearing," Treacy added. "We want them to survive.

"That sport funding is hugely helpful, but to the members of those clubs; continue to be members of those clubs, continue to pay your membership fee.

"That's really vital for the survival of these clubs. Right around the country, no matter what discipline you're in, it's really important.

"When we're back to normal, whenever that is, we want to make sure those clubs are still there, still surviving, thriving.

"And continuing to play the benefit that they do to communities."

Looking ahead, Treacy wouldn't be drawn on his future with the Sport Ireland, saying he would try to do the job to the best of his ability for as long as he was asked.