AMATEUR sport in Barnsley is continuing as usual despite the rise in cases of the omicron variant of Covid-19.

Some amateur sports and leagues have called games off in England, while crowds have been capped in Wales and Scotland.

But the government is yet to introduce stricter measures such as the lockdowns of 2020 and 2021 which saw sport grind to a halt.

Barnsley RUFC decided to postpone their last game before Christmas after the RFU left it up to clubs to call games off if they were worried about the risk of Covid.

But the Shaw Laners are due to host Harrogate Pythons on Saturday.

Coach Kieran Hyde said: “Our game is confirmed for this Saturday. All the lads are looking forward to it and they’ve missed playing.

“You don’t know what to do for the best sometimes.

“It has to be a week in, week out thing and see how you are, if anyone has had a positive test.

“These are very uncertain times.

“We want a game every Saturday but people’s health is more important.”

Barnsley Hockey Club are also due to host a match tomorrow at Darton College.

The town’s cycling and athletics clubs are continuing as normal.

As for local football, the Barnsley Sunday League returned from a Christmas break this week as did the Mexborough Sunday League, while some junior teams also played fixtures.

The highest-placed non-league sides in the town, who play in the Northern Counties East League, have been playing throughout the Christmas period.

While the North West Counties League postponed games, the NCEL has continued and is determined to avoid a third successive null and void season.

Penistone Church recorded their biggest ever crowd of 825 on Sunday.

Worsbrough Bridge were in action on Wednesday.

The Briggers’ chairman Mark Booth said: “After two disrupted seasons it is the belief of Worsbrough Bridge AFC that, although health has to remain the most important factor in decision- making, the stance currently being taken by the NCEL is the right one.

“We have had a few Covid cases during the season so far but most people associated with football just want to play, watch and enjoy.

“We hope that the authorities allow for grassroots football to complete the season, to retain the growing interest and ensure that people continue to participate.

“We hope that no crowd restrictions or behind-closed-doors measures are implemented as many clubs continue to struggle financially.

“For the good of the game, the mental well-being of players, supporters and volunteers who work so hard, there has to be a conclusion to this season to maintain the integrity of the game.”

Athersley Rec manager Jimmy Whitehead added: “Most managers I speak to want to get the games on and feel it is the right thing to do.

“We have been lucky with Covid cases, it’s been more suspensions that we have struggled with.

“We are all stretched but we just want to play.

“If a team has a lot of Covid cases, I am sure their game can be rearranged like in professional football, but I am glad all the games have not been postponed across the league.

“With the last two seasons being cut short, we need to keep going and make sure a bit of money is coming into these clubs.

“Also we don’t want to end up with a big backlog of fixtures at the end of the season.”