Photo: Francois Mori, Associated Press
The tennis singles will be allowed as of may 20.
The directors of the golf clubs and tennis courts in Quebec have breathed a sigh of relief and felt a certain excitement, on Wednesday, learning that they will officially launch their activities on 20 may, at the greatness of the province.
“This is crazy, this is crazy, this is crazy, it is as if we had announced that there will be three days of the Year consecutive. The social networks, the phone… there is excitement in the air, the excitement, the joy. We just put joy in the hearts of many, a lot of Quebecers “, exclaimed, the tone panting, the president of the Association des clubs de golf du Québec (ACGQ), Martin Ducharme.
The latter had just heard a few minutes earlier, the announcement of the minister for Education, Isabelle Charest, who confirmed the gradual recovery of some recreational sports in Quebec, including golf and tennis recreation.
Ms. Charest added that the government of Québec has decided to include the metropolitan area in its plan of déconfinement sports, among others to limit the travel of non-essential between the regions.
Mr. Ducharme, certainly surprised, however, recalled that all the members of the ACGQ must comply with the health policy of the government of Quebec — whose social distancing of 2 meters.
“Yes, yes, I’m surprised, but in a pleasant way, as people need to take the air, people need to leave their homes, he mentioned. But it will be zero tolerance to it ; people are going to have to behave well according to the rules of the public health. “
Same sound of bell on the side of the tennis courts, where the key stakeholders have welcomed the fact that the kick-off of the tennis season is finally given — even if only games of simple will be allowed.
“We were excited to hear it ; it’s been a long time that we are working on a possible recovery. It is a new extremely positive, because people need to do physical activity. […] This is the best news that we could have (Wednesday), ” said the director-general of Tennis Québec, Jean-François Manibal.
If Mr. Manibal said he was slightly disappointed with the fact that Québec does not allow the tennis lessons with a certified coach — only recreational activity will be tolerated for the time being, the vice-president of Tennis Canada and director of the Rogers Cup, Eugène Lapierre, has preferred to advocate caution.
“It is necessary to go step by step. We will start by demonstrating that tennis is a sport without danger to public health. Let’s go quietly. I would have liked everything to be open to the outside and inside, but instead start by allowing people to hit balls, ” said Mr. Lapierre.
“Everywhere in the city, I see people who play tennis against the walls, then yes, you need to give them the opportunity to go and play. Then, we’ll see, if all goes well, we’ll move on to the next step “, he added.
In the meantime, the prime minister François Legault will be able to perfect his technique in view of its dual family summer.
“I think it will do us well, me first, because I like to play (tennis) with my son. I win maybe not, but that is a different story, ” said Mr. Legault, the smile on his lips, during his press briefing daily.
A long process comes to an end
At the beginning of the month of may, Tennis Quebec and Tennis Canada had drafted a joint letter that had been sent to Mr. Legault and Ms. Charest, asking to consider the opening of outdoor tennis courts in a first phase of déconfinement.
In an email sent to The canadian Press, Mr. Manibal stated in particular that the tennis had all the attributes and all the qualities that would enable the population to start to practice sport safely. It is increasingly evident, he added, that the people are in need, physically and psychologically, physical activity, and resume the practice of their favorite sport.
Mr. Lapierre argued that there are relatively simple means to comply with the instructions in public health, including by not taking that games, simple, by providing a window of ten minutes between two blocks of the reservation and asking the players to bring their own balls and initialize it with a permanent marker.
On the side of the golf course, Mr. Ducharme as member of the Table de concertation, was also of the opinion that it is possible to impose measures of social distancing and safe for the public health without distorting the practice of the sport. On Wednesday, he welcomed the involvement of the provincial government in the steps which have led to the announcement of Ms. Charest.
“I thank, personally, the seven departments with which we worked. We had an exemplary collaboration with them, with the public health, the Table de concertation, and to all that has been done so far “, he summarized.
In the case of golf, we were worried about the financial consequences of a prolonged pause. Had already been mentioned by Mr. Ducharme, the losses were tangible, particularly in regards to events and receptions that cater to a good number of golf clubs for a whole year.
But all those doubts evaporated in a few seconds, Wednesday.
“It’s going to help a lot. I would not have answered the same thing if you had spoken to on 20 June or 20 July. It is sure that there, if you look behind us, there has not been so many beautiful days this spring. Therefore, from the 20th of may, with the enthusiasm that there is currently, with all the people who are at home, it is certain that people are going to attack the golf courses. I even wonder if we’ll have enough golf courses in Quebec to meet the demand. “
Thus, as is sometimes the case in golf or tennis, to force him to choose, he comes of good things.
The complete list of activities that will be authorized may 20,
Canoe and kayak whitewater and calm water
Scuba diving, snorkeling outdoor sports
Hiking horse riding outdoor
Athletics (running and throwing that takes place outside)
Rowing (boat only simple)
Canoeing and kayaking gear (boat only simple)
Activities cycling outdoor
Swimming in open water (lakes)
Skating on road and on track
Tennis by simple and outside
Triathlon (open water swimming only)
Sailing (boat only simple)
To see the video