Offaly dissapointed at CCC's decision

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Offaly dissapointed at CCC's decision

Postby athlumneyboy » Tue Jul 15, 2008 12:05 pm

Taken from OffaLY WEBSITE

Offaly dissapointed at CCC's decision


The following is the text of the submission sent to the CCC meeting this morning:

“Offaly's victory over Limerick in last nights All-Ireland Hurling Qualifier has major implications for a number of our U21 and Senior players based on the current schedule of games. As it stands our U21 hurlers are due to play Kilkenny in the Leinster U21 final on Wednesday next (July 16th) in Tullamore and our Senior hurlers are due to play the All-Ireland qualifier on Saturday.

Yesterday U21 players, Diarmuid Horan, Derek Molloy, Joe Bergin and Daniel Currams lined out for the senior side, while Conor Mahon (who had played against Laois and Kilkenny) came on as a substitute. In addition the following six U21 players James Dempsey, Damien Kilmartin, James Gorman, Conor Hernon, Brian Leonard and Stephen Wynne are members of the 30 man senior panel.

In recent times we in the GAA, at all levels, have expressed grave concern in relation to two major issues, one being the whole area of player welfare and in particular player burn out and the other being the state of Leinster hurling.

I'm sure members of the CCC will agree that it would be grossly unfair and against all the principles on player welfare, which were highlighted, by An Uachtarain, the Ard Stuirthoir, at the various workshops in the early part of the year and subsequently at the Special Congress in January, to ask at least four players to play three such high profile matches in a seven day period. It would send out all the wrong messages in relation to where we stand as an organisation on this issue. Surely we should practice what we preach.

On the second issue Leinster hurling has taken a battering in recent years and we in Offaly have worked very hard at trying to restore our status to where it was in the 80' and 90's. A lot of work has been put in by players, team management and County Board Officials and we feel that in order to sustain that progress any obstacles in our way should be removed. We are not asking for special treatment in this regard, merely that the unusual position that we find ourselves in, based on our small hurling base, be given due consideration. All we ask is that all players be given an opportunity to express themselves in the best possible manner. This would not be possible if they have to adhere to this schedule.

We are acutely aware of the difficult decisions that the CCC have to make and the importance of keeping a tight fixture schedule. However, we do feel there is room for manoeuvre on this issue and would make the following proposal.

That the Leinster U21 hurling final be postponed to Saturday July 26th, our hurling qualifier go ahead as planned this week-end and that in the event of Offaly qualifying for the All-Ireland quarter-final that game take place over the August Bank Holiday week-end.

Kilkenny and Leinster Council have both indicated that they would be amenable to this request. In fairness to Leinster Council they already showed their concerns for player welfare when changing the date of the Leinster U21 semi-finals, following the draw between Dublin and Wexford in the Leinster Senior Championship, to avoid players playing three games in seven days. We ask that the CCC now show similar leadership in agreeing to our request.

We would also ask that our hurling qualifier match on Saturday be as early as possible in order that we have an opportunity to have O'Connor Pk, properly stewarded and ready for our game with Down on Saturday evening.”

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