Northern Ireland heatwave: GAA games under threat as dry pitches pose risk to players
GAA pitches across Northern Ireland are becoming unsafe for players as the prolonged dry spell continues.
The grounds, where scores of games are played every week, are becoming dry and hard from the lack of water. It means players are at an increased risk of breaking bones, as well as cuts and bruises, if they fall.
Liam Peoples, who is treasurer of the County Derry GAA Board, said no club anywhere in Northern Ireland will have a sprinkler system to keep the pitch green and lush.
He said: "This weekend you could see a noticeable deterioration of the pitches. The grass was burned by the sunshine and lack of water.
"The grounds are becoming quite hard and this will lead to increased injuries if a player falls. That risk will ultimately mean the grounds will be out of use for health and safety of the players.
"If this weather continues the entire season could be affected because no GAA club will have the means of keeping the grass green and the ground playable.
"This is pretty unprecedented weather which we don't see too often, but it could have a big impact on our season."