SION Swifts Ladies’ Danske Women’s Premiership game against Crusaders scheduled for Wednesday night was postponed after the North Tyrone club took the decision to suspend all activities owing to the escalating coronavirus situation in the greater Strabane area and across the border in Donegal.
And first team boss Tony McGinley believes a possible rescheduled fixture against Linfield next week is also in grave doubt.
A number of Sion’s players are based in Donegal and therefore their movements are severely restricted. Some players are currently self-isolating and aside from the fact that McGinley would struggle to get a team out he said everyone’s health and safety was paramount.
“I couldn’t field nine players never mind 13 for the Crusaders game,” said the Sion supremo.
“We have a lot of players based in Donegal. We also have a lot of young players who are just 15 and as such aren’t eligible to play senior football.
“There is no way the game could have gone ahead, we have a duty of care to our players, our staff and their families as well.
“Next week is a catch up week and there is talk that we would be playing Linfield in Strabane next Wednesday night but there is a lot of discussion around whether or not we can make that happen.
“A lot of our players from Donegal are under-18 and as it stands their parents don’t want them crossing the border.If we decide the game goes ahead they might get stopped at the border and not be allowed to travel because it is not seen as essential travel.
“Understandably NIFL want to get the league wrapped up but the bottom line is this is not a good time to be playing football in the north west area. There is a doubt over that Linfield game and it could be three or four weeks down the line before we are back at it.”
On a more positive note Sion have added to their squad by signing former player Michelle McDaid to boost their attacking options and at the time of going to press McGinley was hoping to secure the signature of an experienced defender.
FULL STORY IN THURSDAY’S STRABANE CHRONICLE