National Forum

What Can Be Done To Save Offaly Hurling

(Oldest Posts First) - Go To The Latest Post


Replying To Tadhg2020:  "I agree. However, as someone who has worked in offaly for the last 14 years or so, I find that many Offaly people equate Galways presence and Offalys demise. They resent Galways presence in the LSHC. Its often easier to blame than fix.
Incidentally pretty much all of my Wexford friends also resent Galways presence in the LSHC and are totally against them having home games even within the round Robin system. Thats possibly for another thread though!"
You are spot on. Alot but maybe not most of my friends weren't too pleased that Galway were admitted. Wexford voted against Galway being admitted. For sure it reduces our chances of winning Leinster titles. And the pedantics are obviously right that Galway and Antrim are not in Leinster. But for the good of the game of hurling as a whole it has been very good. Hurling needs the LSHC to be more competitive and therefore more exciting. And obviously it has to be good for hurling in Galway and Antrim that they would have more championship games against top level opposition. From an individual players perspective to be playing on better players and from a county board revenue perspective to be hosting more big games also. This will also raise the profile of hurling nationally. Personally trips to Salthill or the Glens of Antrim are great too. And I cant wait for the new Casement getting finished in Andytown. Spent many a happy afternoon sitting on the grass there years ago!

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1449 - 26/02/2021 10:04:11    2332794

Link

Replying To Viking66:  "And with this thread being about Offaly hurling its important that people dont blame Galway playing in the LSHC for the state Offaly hurling is in."
Offaly hurling was in bother, before Galway hurlers came into Leinster in 2009, the reason was to provide competitive opposition to Kilkenny who were dominant. Offaly hurlers had an occasional good result, ie v Limerick in 2008. The Offaly decline continued to the current situation.
We have 2 targets. None of them guaranteed, but have to be targeted by players and management.
Win the Christy Ring Cup
Promotion from Division 2A.

MicktheMiller (Offaly) - Posts: 214 - 26/02/2021 11:21:15    2332805

Link

Replying To StoreysTash:  "Wexford were 5 points up v Tipp with 10 minutes to go against 14 men if I remember right. That is throwing a game away in my book, and having beaten Kilkenny already in the year, we'll never know for sure I guess but I don't see us getting a better chance for this team."
Unfortunately I think you're right.. Watching the match on TV I remember with 8/9 mins to go saying to my wife Wexford are going to lose here if they're not careful.
Instead of attacking the game and finishing off Tipp, they withdrew and tried to defend their lead. Played the last few mins with fear of losing.. Awful shame cos I really think the way that team were playing in 19 they had a great chance of winning the all Ireland.

skillet (Limerick) - Posts: 783 - 26/02/2021 11:28:53    2332807

Link

Nothing

tonguey (Cavan) - Posts: 315 - 26/02/2021 11:43:13    2332808

Link

Replying To MicktheMiller:  "Offaly hurling was in bother, before Galway hurlers came into Leinster in 2009, the reason was to provide competitive opposition to Kilkenny who were dominant. Offaly hurlers had an occasional good result, ie v Limerick in 2008. The Offaly decline continued to the current situation.
We have 2 targets. None of them guaranteed, but have to be targeted by players and management.
Win the Christy Ring Cup
Promotion from Division 2A."
Dead right Mick. Offaly hurlers were quite strong up to about 2004 when they could easily have won the Leinster Final. I believe that changes in demographics have hit Offaly hard. In the seventies, eighties and nineties Offaly teams, in both hurling and football, seem to have been built around bands of brothers. I know every county have had siblings playing on successful teams but in Offalys case it was very common. I firmly believe the reduction in family size world in todays have hit Offaly especially hard.

Oldtourman (Limerick) - Posts: 2771 - 26/02/2021 12:07:42    2332810

Link

Replying To Oldtourman:  "Dead right Mick. Offaly hurlers were quite strong up to about 2004 when they could easily have won the Leinster Final. I believe that changes in demographics have hit Offaly hard. In the seventies, eighties and nineties Offaly teams, in both hurling and football, seem to have been built around bands of brothers. I know every county have had siblings playing on successful teams but in Offalys case it was very common. I firmly believe the reduction in family size world in todays have hit Offaly especially hard."
Unfortunately for Offaly the game(in both codes) moved on to the next level at pretty much the same time as offaly went into decline. The level of professionalism brought in by cork and Kilkenny in early naughties and progressed by the top teams since has changed the intercounty game forever. Thus the gap became large very quickly. It also means that they have a mountain to climb now to get back competing to win leinsters and everest to win all irelands.
That said as mick says it starts with winning Ring Cup and moves on from there.

Tadhg2020 (Limerick) - Posts: 12 - 26/02/2021 16:05:10    2332827

Link

Replying To Tadhg2020:  "I agree. However, as someone who has worked in offaly for the last 14 years or so, I find that many Offaly people equate Galways presence and Offalys demise. They resent Galways presence in the LSHC. Its often easier to blame than fix.
Incidentally pretty much all of my Wexford friends also resent Galways presence in the LSHC and are totally against them having home games even within the round Robin system. Thats possibly for another thread though!"
I never got any sense of that in Wexford to be honest re Galway.
In fact, I think Galway should be brought in at all levels.
I also think their club teams should be made earn their keep rather than being straight in to an All-Ireland club semi final. Stupidest thing ever and leads to desperately 1-sided finals in some recent years.
Whether or not they make things harder for us is neither here nor there. If we want to be the best, we have to beat the best. If Offaly are blaming that, they are completely deluded.

StoreysTash (Wexford) - Posts: 984 - 26/02/2021 21:21:38    2332848

Link

Replying To MicktheMiller:  "Offaly hurling was in bother, before Galway hurlers came into Leinster in 2009, the reason was to provide competitive opposition to Kilkenny who were dominant. Offaly hurlers had an occasional good result, ie v Limerick in 2008. The Offaly decline continued to the current situation.
We have 2 targets. None of them guaranteed, but have to be targeted by players and management.
Win the Christy Ring Cup
Promotion from Division 2A."
It was easy to have a good result against Limerick in 2008. Limerick were s**t at the time!

johnocarroll17 (Limerick) - Posts: 80 - 26/02/2021 22:00:40    2332859

Link

Replying To Viking66:  "In the 1954 Championship Offaly beat Westmeath by 20 points. Wexford beat Kilkenny by 19 points. Then beat Dublin in the Leinster final by 22 points. Then beat Antrim in the AISF by 44 points. They scored 12 goals. Lost the final to Cork 1-9 to 1-6."
I knew of the 44 point win alright which is a rare loss thankfully, the 19 and 20 points I would live with and we do have those deficits still, but its these over 25 point defeats that annoy me...when you hit the 20 mark, ease off, these lads have jobs to go to tomorrow and families at home or watching in normal times...how much does a team like kilkenny want to win by, 40 points, 45...what is enough like...

Fairplayalways (Offaly) - Posts: 598 - 27/02/2021 23:02:10    2333009

Link

Replying To Tadhg2020:  "Firstly Galway were in Munster for a number of years and left again of their own accord.
Secondly Offaly arent out of Leinster because Galway are in. They are out because they currently aren't good enough.
Thirdly the powers that be did rejig the hurling championship. They made it a 10 team championship with 5 in Munster of the Standard and 4 in Leinster of the standard and one a bit off that standard. The Leinster Council have now extended that to two that are a bit off the standard. Thst is the reality. Dublin aren't great. Laois aren't either and we all know that Antrim will struggle. All 5 teams in Munster are much better than those three teams.

The above situation in Leinster helps Offaly as I said earlier. The standard has been, voluntarily, lowered by the guardians of the LSHC. All Offaly have to do now is to be better than the other team that is below the standard required. However they are currently at least 6 teams behind that standard so there is some work to do.The key is to capture the imagination of the counties youth. Make them want to commit to the game and the county development squads. That is the real job of work that the County Board faces."
never said Offaly were out of Leinster because Galway were in it...thats not an issue that Offaly arent in it, they are not good enough, BUT not being good enough to be in your own province while two non Leinster teams are in it is a bit farcical..yes Galway were brought in to make it competitive, as it was on its knees, un helped by Kilkennys dominance and utter destroying of any team once the got ahead of them (outlined above and not solely in Leinster either were teams obliterated by Kilkenny)..totally unfair that Galway are in Leinster "full time" and Munster dont have to contend with them...shocks happen and thats the thing with sport, Offaly winning first Leinster in 1980, footballers winning in 1982 had a chance as they were there the year before and in simi final in 1980, but it was still a shock when they beat Kerry...Clare beating Cork in Munster in 1993 hurling, I could go on and arrive at more recent years..Offaly as other posters have pointed out will hopefully win the Christy RIng, and hopefully the JMCD next year and then be back in Leinster, but neither competition is guaranteed..but we certainly wont be able to pull off a shock if we are not playing in Leinster...time will tell as they say..

Fairplayalways (Offaly) - Posts: 598 - 27/02/2021 23:12:45    2333011

Link

Replying To Fairplayalways:  "never said Offaly were out of Leinster because Galway were in it...thats not an issue that Offaly arent in it, they are not good enough, BUT not being good enough to be in your own province while two non Leinster teams are in it is a bit farcical..yes Galway were brought in to make it competitive, as it was on its knees, un helped by Kilkennys dominance and utter destroying of any team once the got ahead of them (outlined above and not solely in Leinster either were teams obliterated by Kilkenny)..totally unfair that Galway are in Leinster "full time" and Munster dont have to contend with them...shocks happen and thats the thing with sport, Offaly winning first Leinster in 1980, footballers winning in 1982 had a chance as they were there the year before and in simi final in 1980, but it was still a shock when they beat Kerry...Clare beating Cork in Munster in 1993 hurling, I could go on and arrive at more recent years..Offaly as other posters have pointed out will hopefully win the Christy RIng, and hopefully the JMCD next year and then be back in Leinster, but neither competition is guaranteed..but we certainly wont be able to pull off a shock if we are not playing in Leinster...time will tell as they say.."
I would say Offaly's decline was well and truly happening before Galway ever set foot in Leinster, and if you are pointing back to the 90's and 80's then you are missing the point.
Wexford properly screwed up in the late 90s and noughties but eventually got our act in gear. That never happened in Offaly.

StoreysTash (Wexford) - Posts: 984 - 28/02/2021 16:25:13    2333091

Link

Replying To StoreysTash:  "I would say Offaly's decline was well and truly happening before Galway ever set foot in Leinster, and if you are pointing back to the 90's and 80's then you are missing the point.
Wexford properly screwed up in the late 90s and noughties but eventually got our act in gear. That never happened in Offaly."
I just wonder has hurling evolved too much now (without Offaly being involved) for us to get up to speed...I watch Munster Club games and the some of the Leinster Club games on TG4 and the level of hurling I have no problem saying would beat Offaly senior hurling team...might not be popular for saying that but I seen club teams in the last few years and they would beat Offaly from what I seen...have we misse the boat, in that no matter what we do now, our mentality and production belt has modified and is not producing the fellah (in enough numbers) to make a strong inter county panel...we have loads of skillfull players, but only 2 or 3 with all the ingredients for intercounty from what I see, the rest games go by them they might as well be at home by the fire..they don't know what it is play with fire in their bellies..I have seen them on the pitches after games, very very few are down down, they are almost the same after the match as before it attitude wise...

Fairplayalways (Offaly) - Posts: 598 - 04/03/2021 16:56:09    2333522

Link

Oh I think Offalys hen is well plucked by now and the feathers are in the dunghill since the late 90s

tonguey (Cavan) - Posts: 315 - 04/03/2021 17:06:43    2333523

Link

the only route back might be if, and only if, the high standard drops back a little and Offaly come on abit, the the latter is possible, the former..I cant see that happening though..

Fairplayalways (Offaly) - Posts: 598 - 05/03/2021 15:55:14    2333583

Link

Replying To Fairplayalways:  "I just wonder has hurling evolved too much now (without Offaly being involved) for us to get up to speed...I watch Munster Club games and the some of the Leinster Club games on TG4 and the level of hurling I have no problem saying would beat Offaly senior hurling team...might not be popular for saying that but I seen club teams in the last few years and they would beat Offaly from what I seen...have we misse the boat, in that no matter what we do now, our mentality and production belt has modified and is not producing the fellah (in enough numbers) to make a strong inter county panel...we have loads of skillfull players, but only 2 or 3 with all the ingredients for intercounty from what I see, the rest games go by them they might as well be at home by the fire..they don't know what it is play with fire in their bellies..I have seen them on the pitches after games, very very few are down down, they are almost the same after the match as before it attitude wise..."
Offalys club teams have a good record in Leinster and play with plenty of fire. so I think you are being too negative there. Ye came from nowhere to win with a great team in the 80s and produced another one in the 90s. That's 2 teams in 135 odd years. Even if it takes a while no reason to suspect you cant have 2 great teams in the next 135.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1449 - 08/03/2021 06:57:06    2333688

Link

Replying To Viking66:  "Offalys club teams have a good record in Leinster and play with plenty of fire. so I think you are being too negative there. Ye came from nowhere to win with a great team in the 80s and produced another one in the 90s. That's 2 teams in 135 odd years. Even if it takes a while no reason to suspect you cant have 2 great teams in the next 135."
Birr winning the AI clubs and Coolderry and KK getting to the final (the latter playing a challenge game against Kilkenny U21s the week before the club final and their key man breaks his hand in that game - a loss to the club and the county and has never really come back since) St. Rynaghs older teams gave good accounts of themselves ok but in recent years, be it they went 23 years without a county title, but they were very very tame in Leinsters and bowed out very easily...outside Kilcormac who are ageing and bringing in new players, Coolderry are in transition, Birr are probably coming into a settled team now but unless they or Kilcormac have a push in them if a Leinster Club is held, in the next year or or two, I cannot see a team in Offaly having an impact on the Club...

Fairplayalways (Offaly) - Posts: 598 - 08/03/2021 12:21:46    2333695

Link

Best way to save it is make a plan for development squads and in the short term, do everything our power to hold onto the good hurlers between 18 and 21. Massive drop off at this age for lots of reasons and another days discussion. There are plenty hurlers with potential to mix it with the top 8 teams. They need support at that vital stage. All well and good talking about the Offaly brigade pre 2000 but the landscape has completely changed around the game. The hours put into training and keeping in good order for a hurler in any of the top teams is at least 20 hrs. Add this to a 40hr week and everything else in between it has made the lifestyle a pressure cooker. Dublin overcome this with money and support for the players outside of the training. Probably not in line with the ethos of the GAA but seems to be the way things will continue. Offaly need to catch up quickly in this way. Invest in the area where the big drop off occurs for the next few years and add new players to the roster each year.

Mountain_south (Offaly) - Posts: 7 - 09/03/2021 21:03:42    2333787

Link

Replying To Mountain_south:  "Best way to save it is make a plan for development squads and in the short term, do everything our power to hold onto the good hurlers between 18 and 21. Massive drop off at this age for lots of reasons and another days discussion. There are plenty hurlers with potential to mix it with the top 8 teams. They need support at that vital stage. All well and good talking about the Offaly brigade pre 2000 but the landscape has completely changed around the game. The hours put into training and keeping in good order for a hurler in any of the top teams is at least 20 hrs. Add this to a 40hr week and everything else in between it has made the lifestyle a pressure cooker. Dublin overcome this with money and support for the players outside of the training. Probably not in line with the ethos of the GAA but seems to be the way things will continue. Offaly need to catch up quickly in this way. Invest in the area where the big drop off occurs for the next few years and add new players to the roster each year."
I would say Offaly need to start at brass tacks at underage, focus on maybe winning a Leinster minor or at least make that a key target for the next 5-10 years.
Wexford did that and while they didn't give a good account of themselves v Galway, at least the monkey of not having won a minor since the 80s was gone. Now they can up the bar for future teams to go a step further.
Its all about progression and moving targets.

StoreysTash (Wexford) - Posts: 984 - 10/03/2021 12:29:21    2333806

Link

Replying To StoreysTash:  "I would say Offaly need to start at brass tacks at underage, focus on maybe winning a Leinster minor or at least make that a key target for the next 5-10 years.
Wexford did that and while they didn't give a good account of themselves v Galway, at least the monkey of not having won a minor since the 80s was gone. Now they can up the bar for future teams to go a step further.
Its all about progression and moving targets."
Offaly need to invest fair enough but invest what..we dont have massive big sponsors to pour money into our system..its fund raise almost all the way for Offaly and most counties, and if you havent a big town/city in your county there will be no investment jumping to come in (Kilkenny being the exception I suppose)..I hurled all my life, my son played for a while, but tried another sport one winter and that has become his number one sport..wouldnt puck a ball around the yard even with me, a bit of Gaelic but that too wouldnt be first choice to his other sport which he is quiet good at...I know once they are playing something is great, but even my appetite for GAA involvement has waned, it is a very "win at all cost" mentality which obviosly is very hard to keep up as you cannot win every game..the enjoyment then goes out of it with such pressure, and they seen less pressureised sports which they can enjoy..that wont get you up the steps of the hoganstand I know, but as I say, everyone cant win..I dont know, our ship has sailed, differet times, more options, and from minor up you are playing an amateur sport at semi professional level at the very least, not everyone can afford that or indeed want it (its great if you win of course)..Offaly dont have the players firstly or the resources to retain the players who do commit, those who do commit are often sarcrificing lots of other things and there is only so long you will do that...

Fairplayalways (Offaly) - Posts: 598 - 10/03/2021 14:27:09    2333815

Link

Offaly offaly always offaly. What can be done with kildare the team that won the ring cup to get then up to the next level with a big populated county? What cam be done with Down the team that beat offaly to get them to next level? Or how can we get westmeath carlow laois and antrim who are miles ahead of offaly?competing for all Ireland's?? Why is it always about offaly ???

Irishcelt (Wicklow) - Posts: 138 - 10/03/2021 15:32:15    2333818

Link