National Forum

Abuse Of Players -January And February

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Absolutely true for Tony Kelly. Add in players who are still in club champion and we must ask again for the 20th time, when will Croke Park correct this blatant abuse of young amateurs by having the busiest time of year occur between mid January and Mid March. If we take into account dual players, and under 20 or 21 then thes youn men may be togging out 5 or 6 times in a week.
RECKLESS ENDAGERMENT!!
Clare's Tony Kelly warns of dual demands on college stars
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Tuesday, January 15, 2019 - 12:00 AM

By Michael Moynihan
• Follow @MikeMoynihanEx
Clare captain Tony Kelly is glad he's not facing into Fitzgibbon Cup action this weekend, with the National League looming.
Kelly starred with the University of Limerick while still a student, but he pointed out that players trying to make county panels "could do more harm than good" with the amount of training involved in Fitzgibbon and county teams.
Picture: Sportsfile
"I'm done, so there's a bit of downtime to train hard with the county while that's on," said Kelly.
"But we have lads now facing into the Fitzgibbon next Sunday, again in midweek, and then a league game the next weekend. It's pretty daunting for them, especially if you're new onto a county panel.
"It's very hard to establish yourself on a county panel if you're going to be with the college twice and rejoining the league panel that weekend.
You could do yourself more harm than good so it's about trying to find a balance, but our management team has been adept at doing that the last couple of years. It's definitely something that needs to be looked at because we have players - as do other counties - who are looking at playing two or three games in a very tight window.
Kelly was speaking after Clare's high-scoring win over Tipperary in the Co-Op Superstores Munster SHL final in Limerick on Sunday. The Ballyea clubman saw the Munster League as good preparation for the season ahead: "It is, every game we've played in has been highly competitive, which is very good for younger lads coming in.
"The pace has come up and up - in Waterford last weekend, the pace for a game at this time of year was serious. Even last Sunday the pace was at the pace of a league game two or three years ago, the physicality and conditioning of players has gone through the roof.
That's why this competition is important, it means you're not going into the first games in the league flat and dead and not knowing where you are after the first 20 minutes. That's what we've tried to use these three games, to get the maximum out of them.
"In fairness, the weather has been pretty good and the fields are in good nick, but the play is slower than it is during the summer.
"That's what we'll be facing into come the league, four or five games in similar conditions.
"We're well used to it at this time of the year but in fairness the pitch (Gaelic Grounds) was in good order on Sunday, and Thurles would be the same."
That reference to Thurles relates to Clare's opening NHL game against Tipperary - their opponents last Sunday. Kelly wasn't getting carried away by the four goals his side scored last weekend, though.
"No, we've had three good games and found talent, but we won't be paying much attention to scoreboards or anything like that. We know the opposition we'll be facing in the league - Tipp will be completely different in two weeks' time."
The league is another opportunity for Clare's newcomers to make an impression, he added.
READ MORE: 40 GAA Matches to be broadcast on TG4 as part of station's spring schedule
"I suppose it's getting yourself ready for the championship. We know from the league last year we got a run of it, and with the new structures there's not much of a down-time between the end of the league and the first game in the championship. It's about getting yourself to that peak condition for the championship and knowing you can go to another gear.
"We know the standard is high in the Munster League, but the National League is another notch up and the championship is another couple of notches up again.
"It's about trying to find new lads and increasing competition within the panel and I think we've done that - Colin Guilfoyle, Aidan McCarthy, Diarmuid Ryan, they were all good again on Sunday. If they can push on again in the league they'll make it harder for the so-called established players to get back on the team."
How good is a win like last Sunday's for confidence?
"Every win you get is a confidence booster but we won't read too much into it irrespective of the result. Some of the play is where you get confidence in those kinds of matches, there were good patches of play.
"There were patches where we need to improve as well, but it's the good patches of play you look back on and take confidence from."

PatOLogical (Limerick) - Posts: 952 - 17/01/2019 19:18:32    2157862

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More matches in January-March than for the rest of the year.
You couldn't make it up. Only in GAA.
Good thing the winter training ban is being so well observed, they'd be wore out altogether if they were training in December.....

StoreysTash (Wexford) - Posts: 233 - 17/01/2019 19:51:00    2157876

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First Tony Kelly (Irish Examiner, Jan13 )and now Brian Cody (Independt Jan 15) surely they would know a thing or two.



Article by Colm Keys
January 15 2019 2:30 AM



Brian Cody has described the potential situation facing Fitzgibbon Cup inter-county hurlers over the next three weeks as "really, really, really madness".
In an interview with his local 'Community Radio Kilkenny City' the Kilkenny manager highlighted a schedule that he says could leave players involved in five games in two weeks.
He also re-iterated his dissatisfaction with the new inter-county schedule, warning of the long-term dangers of sidelining club hurling for long periods during the summer.
Cody pointed out that the Fitzgibbon Cup gets underway this Sunday with a second round on the following Wednesday or Thursday before the league starts the following weekend. With further midweek Fitzgibbon Cup rounds scheduled prior to the second round of the league, the toll has him concerned.
"We have 12 players involved in the Fitzgibbon, not just us but all the counties. And then they talk about burnout. But that's really, really, really madness from a fixture point of view. And I haven't heard one person mention a single thing about it. But how there is not some kind of communication, whatever way you want to put it, between the people making the fixtures, it's madness. But it's the situation we're in.
"It couldn't be ideal, because for the previous number of years non-stop ringing in our ears was player welfare and burnout. There were all sorts of things being thrown at us about training and overtraining different managers dragging fellas here and there which was, absolutely for us, never the truth.
He also pointed to the absence of breaks during the league as unsatisfactory.
"Whoever goes to the final will play all the matches Sunday after Sunday after Sunday. Then the clubs are supposed to play away in April and then we're off in May," he added.
"I'm merely pointing out the facts. Will that impinge on our thinking or thinking 'this is wrong', this is the competition we're competing in and we're going to be absolutely, completely taken up by the challenges facing us."
Cody's fears for club hurling as it makes way for a heavier inter-county programme have been aired to the authorities already, he stressed.
"Club hurling is not being catered for as it should be, it is suffering. The Kilkenny championship structure, up to last year, was really good. They knew when they were playing, a few weeks in between matches, That's now no longer the case, they're expected to play two matches in April and which they've got to prepare well because if you lose two matches, straight away there is pressure.
"At the minute you're supposed to forget about everything and come back whenever, whenever is whenever the county team is gone out of the championship or they might just decide we'll start against in August or September.
"That's not healthy, it's not healthy for players. Club hurling is suffering and is going to suffer if that continues and what I believe they are not thinking about is that, if club hurling suffers, standards suffer and everyone's standards drop and then they're trying to wonder where it all went wrong."
Irish Independent

PatOLogical (Limerick) - Posts: 952 - 18/01/2019 12:18:02    2157986

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"UCC manager Tom Kingston says the demands being placed on intercounty hurlers at this time are year are "just crazy".
As the start of the national hurling league coincides with the Fitzgibbon Cup, Cork trio Shane Kingston, Mark Coleman and Robbie O'Flynn and Kerry's Shane Conway - all of whom represent UCC - are faced with the daunting prospect of five important matches inside a fortnight. The situation is mirrored by other county and third-level players around the country.
"The schedule is very hard on the players. The demands on the intercounty hurler today are just crazy," Kingston told The Irish Examiner. "Our game against UL was championship hurling played in January. You had a lot of quality on both sides.
"Players, I believe, will break down with injuries. It is very difficult on them as they are training so hard at the moment, particularly the intercounty lads. Even the non-intercounty lads are training close to seven days a week. It is very, very difficult."

PatOLogical (Limerick) - Posts: 952 - 22/01/2019 14:12:34    2158891

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PatOLogical you have article posted but whats your proposal for change?

DonaldDuck (Tipperary) - Posts: 544 - 22/01/2019 15:11:01    2158910

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Replying To DonaldDuck:  "PatOLogical you have article posted but whats your proposal for change?"
Simples.

All players on intercounty panels are banned from playing in the Fitzgibbon and Sigerson cups.

They're secondary competitions at the heels of the hunt but these "bursaries" are the issue then.

bricktop (Down) - Posts: 2259 - 22/01/2019 15:27:47    2158912

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Has Tony Kelly raised this with his GPA Rep?

WunderBar (Galway) - Posts: 187 - 22/01/2019 16:01:33    2158916

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Simples.

All players on intercounty panels are banned from playing in the Fitzgibbon and Sigerson cups.

They're secondary competitions at the heels of the hunt but these "bursaries" are the issue then.
bricktop (Down) - Posts: 2248 - 1/22/19 3:27:47 PM
I wouldnt think its that simple. Playing the different levels isnt necessarily the issue its the expectation from coaches and amongst players that they need to train for all teams as much as fellas playing on just one of these sides. there isnt communication between coaches about players workloads.
guys can be in a county squad and playing fitzgibbon/sigerson and not playing with the county side only training but they would be playing for their college team.

DonaldDuck (Tipperary) - Posts: 544 - 22/01/2019 16:53:42    2158924

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Replying To DonaldDuck:  "Simples.

All players on intercounty panels are banned from playing in the Fitzgibbon and Sigerson cups.

They're secondary competitions at the heels of the hunt but these "bursaries" are the issue then.
bricktop (Down) - Posts: 2248 - 1/22/19 3:27:47 PM
I wouldnt think its that simple. Playing the different levels isnt necessarily the issue its the expectation from coaches and amongst players that they need to train for all teams as much as fellas playing on just one of these sides. there isnt communication between coaches about players workloads.
guys can be in a county squad and playing fitzgibbon/sigerson and not playing with the county side only training but they would be playing for their college team."
Maybe I'm wrong but my understanding is that while a player is playing in Fitzgibbon cup he is obligated to line out for his college team and CANNOT play for his county team until Fitzgibbon ends. This puts him at a severe disadvantage if he is trying to impress or break into county panel as he misses the opportunity to play in league games and "impress' the county manager and backroom team. While it may not have been to the sole reason a case in point in 2018 was Na Piarsaigh trio of Shane Dowling, Peter Casey and Will O'donoghue. Apart from that, as alluded to by Tony ,Kelly, Cody, and Kingston a player can conceivably play 5 or 6 games in an unreasonable time, leading to burn out and injury.
My solution? don't have one until the GAA as a body firstly sits up and acknowledges that this is a problem for the players. From there the GAA, ( Croke Park) can engage in the 4 problem solving steps:
1 Admit
2 Define
3Discuss
4 Enact or arrive at a solution.

These are students and men with jobs, not machines.

PatOLogical (Limerick) - Posts: 952 - 22/01/2019 18:05:44    2158947

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Replying To bricktop:  "Simples.

All players on intercounty panels are banned from playing in the Fitzgibbon and Sigerson cups.

They're secondary competitions at the heels of the hunt but these "bursaries" are the issue then."
I agree totally, College is second tier and the problem IS the busaries.

arock (Dublin) - Posts: 3904 - 22/01/2019 18:28:17    2158952

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The intercounty season needs to be pushed back nothing else for it.

I think the push to play club championship in 1 year is stupid, the GAA prefer August and September for the later stages on the championship.

I think go with Mid February to the end of March for Provincial and All Ireland club.

Play college competitions alongside that.

Intercounty preseason can also be played.

April to September for intercounty but with say 2 club break weeks for each code during the National Leagues which would be April to June.

County Teams start championship in July play them off quickly and county boards can resume/start club championships as soon as the county team is eliminated and no earlier than the weekend after the August bank holidays so that club players can organise holidays in July.

Whammo86 (Antrim) - Posts: 2275 - 23/01/2019 10:23:57    2159052

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The issue is also too many competitions!

What other sport could a 20 year be playing with 7 teams, for example like below.

U/21 Club Hurling
U/21 Club Football
U/21 Hurling County
Senior Football Club
Senior Hurling Club
County Hurling
Fitzgibbon

witnof (Dublin) - Posts: 1404 - 23/01/2019 12:23:57    2159077

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It's the same with the Sigerson. Don't forget that college footballers and hurlers also play a full scale league before Christmas and train accordingly . November and December are supposed to be down time for talented young hurlers and footballers . Yet from October to February they have a full scale season of league and championship commitments with their colleges . Their championship commitments overlap with the start of their national league commitments with their counties . Some colleges still play in the likes of the McKenna Cup too. It's a hugely demanding schedule and the problem IS the bursaries .
The Fitzgibbon and Sigerson Cups should be finished by the end of November . The college leagues should be played after Christmas. Any player who is part of a Fitzgibbon or Sigerson squad cannot be part of the squad for the college leagues .

Greengrass (Louth) - Posts: 4939 - 23/01/2019 15:49:55    2159123

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Replying To witnof:  "The issue is also too many competitions!

What other sport could a 20 year be playing with 7 teams, for example like below.

U/21 Club Hurling
U/21 Club Football
U/21 Hurling County
Senior Football Club
Senior Hurling Club
County Hurling
Fitzgibbon"
and possibly sigerson....

the gaa badly needs a reality check.

perfect10 (Wexford) - Posts: 3210 - 25/01/2019 12:18:27    2159444

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It's the same with the Sigerson. Don't forget that college footballers and hurlers also play a full scale league before Christmas and train accordingly. November and December are supposed to be down time for talented young hurlers and footballers. Yet from October to February they have a full scale season of league and championship commitments with their colleges. Their championship commitments overlap with the start of their national league commitments with their counties. Some colleges still play in the likes of the McKenna Cup too. It's a hugely demanding schedule and the problem IS the bursaries.
The Fitzgibbon and Sigerson Cups should be finished by the end of November. The college leagues should be played after Christmas. Any player who is part of a Fitzgibbon or Sigerson squad cannot be part of the squad for the college leagues.
Greengrass (Louth) - Posts: 4919 - 1/23/19 3:49:55 PM
The problem isnt scholarships/bursaries.
Its the expectation that players play on all teams. Look at other sports. You wont see many top 18/19 year old soccer/rugby players playing on age grade sides all season as well as adult sides.
in rugby if you have a very talented 19 year old who is playing senior rugby he wont necessarily be playing under 20 rugby as well. even the top guys like ireland u20s. for quite a few of them the only u20 games all season they will play is for ireland. they wont simply play club u20s.

DonaldDuck (Tipperary) - Posts: 544 - 25/01/2019 14:21:42    2159477

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Replying To Greengrass:  "It's the same with the Sigerson. Don't forget that college footballers and hurlers also play a full scale league before Christmas and train accordingly . November and December are supposed to be down time for talented young hurlers and footballers . Yet from October to February they have a full scale season of league and championship commitments with their colleges . Their championship commitments overlap with the start of their national league commitments with their counties . Some colleges still play in the likes of the McKenna Cup too. It's a hugely demanding schedule and the problem IS the bursaries .
The Fitzgibbon and Sigerson Cups should be finished by the end of November . The college leagues should be played after Christmas. Any player who is part of a Fitzgibbon or Sigerson squad cannot be part of the squad for the college leagues ."
It is not feasible to play the Third Level championships before Christmas - some colleges have exams from mid-November onwards, and colleges currently find it difficult to get full panels together due to players' club commitments in September/October/November.
A little flexibility on the part of inter-county managers could solve the problem easily. By next Wednesday, for example, there will only be 4 Sigerson Cup teams left in the competition - so how about if county managers "rested" some college players for Round 1 (and maybe Round 2) of the league, allowing those players to focus on college competitions? Then, from mid-February onwards all college players are fully available for the rest of the county season. Too managers not looking out for the longterm good of the players...

football first (None) - Posts: 1109 - 25/01/2019 15:14:26    2159491

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Replying To football first:  "It is not feasible to play the Third Level championships before Christmas - some colleges have exams from mid-November onwards, and colleges currently find it difficult to get full panels together due to players' club commitments in September/October/November.
A little flexibility on the part of inter-county managers could solve the problem easily. By next Wednesday, for example, there will only be 4 Sigerson Cup teams left in the competition - so how about if county managers "rested" some college players for Round 1 (and maybe Round 2) of the league, allowing those players to focus on college competitions? Then, from mid-February onwards all college players are fully available for the rest of the county season. Too managers not looking out for the longterm good of the players..."
To be honest I don't buy this argument that inter county managers should be more flexible and that they are not concerned with the well being of young footballers . The demands placed on young footballers by universities are extreme . For years universities entered the pre season inter county competitions such as the McKenna and O Byrne cups when there was no need for them to be there . They used these competitions as warm ups for the Sigerson Cup . The same was true in hurling. Dr. Niall Moyna who is constantly talking about burnout entered DCU in the Byrne Cup year in year out when there was no need for them to be in it. He then complained about the fixture scheduling of the O Byrne cup. You couldn't make this stuff up. Some universities still play n the pre season competitions . As I've said previously young footballers and hurlers have a full season of league, championship and training between the months of October and February . You said it is not possible to play the Sigerson and Fitzgibbon cups before Christmas yet it is possible to play a full scale inter varsity league before Christmas . How so ? There are very significant demands made of young footballers and hurlers by the universities. In the light of this it is a bit much to look for flexibility from inter county managers . For an awful lot of counties the league is their only chance of success . Supporters of most counties want to see their team do well in the league . The vast majority of GAA supporters consider the league to be much more important than the Sigerson or Fitzgibbon Cups. It is also a little rich to complain about county managers having no regard for young footballers or hurlers when in order to wn either a Fitzgibbon or Sigerson Cup those same players have to play two high intensity games in three days with the possibility of extra time in both games . How is that good for young players ?

Greengrass (Louth) - Posts: 4939 - 25/01/2019 16:30:17    2159506

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Replying To football first:  "It is not feasible to play the Third Level championships before Christmas - some colleges have exams from mid-November onwards, and colleges currently find it difficult to get full panels together due to players' club commitments in September/October/November.
A little flexibility on the part of inter-county managers could solve the problem easily. By next Wednesday, for example, there will only be 4 Sigerson Cup teams left in the competition - so how about if county managers "rested" some college players for Round 1 (and maybe Round 2) of the league, allowing those players to focus on college competitions? Then, from mid-February onwards all college players are fully available for the rest of the county season. Too managers not looking out for the longterm good of the players..."
I don't know any Sigerson grade colleges with exams in November but there are plenty with exams in January. I feel only very select clubs are still going come October so don't see why the Sigerson couldn't be run off between mid October and mid November, giving lots of these young lads a month or so before the grind starts again.. it's more than they're getting now.

Sweetspot (Kildare) - Posts: 86 - 25/01/2019 17:12:37    2159514

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Replying To Sweetspot:  "I don't know any Sigerson grade colleges with exams in November but there are plenty with exams in January. I feel only very select clubs are still going come October so don't see why the Sigerson couldn't be run off between mid October and mid November, giving lots of these young lads a month or so before the grind starts again.. it's more than they're getting now."
Well said .

Greengrass (Louth) - Posts: 4939 - 25/01/2019 17:52:03    2159522

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