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Tampa Bay Club Sport will host games again this weekend

The coronavirus pandemic put a temporary stop to all sports leagues. A soccer tournament will take place in St. Petersburg on Saturday.

Tampa Bay Club Sport, a popular club sports league that hosts recreational tournaments in St. Petersburg and Tampa, announced more games will resume this weekend.

Some leagues returned on May 18, but the first organized soccer tournament will be this Saturday at Rec Dec in St. Pete, said the email sent out on Wednesday. More events are scheduled for each weekend after, including a “Giant Pong Tournament” and golf scramble on June 27.

Chris Giebner, the organization’s CEO, said Thursday that all participants in scheduled events will receive a follow-up email with guidelines on how to protect against COVID-19. An alert on the Tampa Bay Club Sport website lists a number of safety precautions being taken, Giebner said. Event officials will also be wearing masks and other protective gear.

Jay Wolfson, a public health expert at the University of South Florida, said that those who choose play a team sport should wear a mask, gloves and social distance as much as possible.

“They’re there to have a good time, they’re there to play, to drink and they’re going to be speaking loudly,” Wolfson said, even of spectators. “But when you do that, you create more droplet nuclei and those things don’t just disappear. They hang out for a while and float around. Then people will catch the thing and not know they’ve got it.”

Tampa Bay Club Sport had canceled events in March due to COVID-19.

“Too many weeks have passed without tournament fun and post-game beers together!” the email to members read. “We can’t wait to get back out there with you all!”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that contact sports continue to be put on hold as there’s a higher chance of transmission among groups of people.

Dr. Carlos Crespo, a public health professor at Portland State University, ranked different sports based on transmission risk on June 10, according to The Oregonian. Crespo rated basketball as being the highest risk sport to play — especially when played indoors — while rating soccer and ultimate frisbee as medium risk. He rated softball, baseball, tennis and golf as being low risk.

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