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Cul Camps 2018

Damien

Galway Captain Damien Comer with the Nestor Cup

Galway Supreme in Connacht showdown

GALWAY 0-16 ROSCOMMON 2-6

By Cian O'Connell at Dr Hyde Park

Prompted by the splendid Shane Walsh, who married substance with style, Galway returned to the western summit.
Kevin Walsh’s charges produced a dominant second half display to overpower Roscommon, who had set the agenda early on.
Roscommon, who motored smoothly initially, endured severe issues after the restart as Galway outwitted the holders by 0-11 to 1-1 after the restart.
That Roscommon failed to register a score from play in the last 35 minutes confirmed how gritty and resourceful Galway were.

The opening period showcased Roscommon’s ability in attack with the majestic Murtagh brothers inflicting plenty of damage.
Diarmuid contributed four points, including three sweet efforts from play, while Ciarain supplied a gorgeous 22nd minute goal.

That major was all about a blend of speed and skill as the St Faithleach’s clubman manufactured just enough space to make the Galway net dance.
It was a moment of sheer daring and class, while at the opposite end Galway relied on Shane Walsh and Ian Burke for scores and inspiration.
Walsh mined three first half points, kicking two fine efforts from play, while the Kilkerrin-Clonberne forward crafted two further scores for Burke.

Still despite Walsh’s craft Roscommon were content to be departing armed with a 1-5 to 0-5 advantage at the interval.
Galway’s response, though, was loaded with character and following a Diarmuid Murtagh free Galway reeled off six points without reply to seize the initiative.
Walsh struck five of those before Sean Kelly landed an important point, but Roscommon did manage to pose one more serious question.
A foul on Diarmuid Murtagh resulted in a penalty which was converted by Roscommon captain Conor Devaney with six minutes remaining.
Suddenly Ross led by 2-6 to 0-11, but Galway came thundering back once more. Substitute Sean Armstrong restored parity and two Damien Comer points edged the Tribesmen ahead.

Another replacement Adrian Varley and Burke sealed the deal with late points for Galway, who advance to the All Ireland Quarter Final round robin series.

Scorers for Galway: Shane Walsh 0-8 (6fs), Ian Burke 0-3, Damien Comer 0-2, Sean Kelly, Sean Armstrong, Adrian Varley 0-1 each.

Scorers for Roscommon: Diarmuid Murtagh 0-5 (2fs), Ciarain Murtagh and Conor Devaney (pen) 1-0 each, Donie Smith 0-1.

GALWAY: Ruairi Lavelle; Declan Kyne, Sean Andy O’Ceallaigh, David Wynne; Cathal Sweeney, Gareth Bradshaw, Johnny Heaney; Paul Conroy, Tom Flynn; Eamonn Brannigan, Shane Walsh, Sean Kelly; Ian Burke, Damien Comer, Barry McHugh.
Subs: Ciaran Duggan for Conroy (45), Sean Armstrong for McHugh (48), Eoghan Kerin for Wynne (49), Peter Cooke for Heaney (65), Adrian Varley for Brannigan (69), Gary O’Donnell for O’Ceallaigh (70)

ROSCOMMON: Colm Lavin; David Murray, Niall McInerney, Peter Domican; John McManus, Fintan Cregg, Conor Devaney; Cathal Compton, Tadhg O’Rourke; Enda Smith, Niall Kilroy, Brian Stack; Donie Smith, Diarmuid Murtagh, Ciarain Murtagh.
Subs: Ultan Harney for Compton (31), Fergal Lennon for Murray (53, BC), Cathal Cregg for Stack (56), Finbar Cregg for C Murtagh (60), Conor Delaney for O’Rourke (63), Ronan Stack for Kilroy (70)

REFEREE: David Coldrick (Meath).

Shane

Shane Walsh in action in the Hyde Park today

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The Club Players Association (CPA) has criticised the latest proposals to reform the GAA playing calendar, saying they fall "far short of what is required".

Seven motions aimed at easing pressure on club fixtures will be put forward at Special Congress on September 30, but they are "inadequate" according to the CPA.

The statement in full reads:

We have today been given sight of the motions (as attached) issued by Croke Park for the Special Congress that in their words, "Facilitate the Playing of Club Games.’

There are seven motions in total. We had hoped for one motion. A bold, brave and definitive motion that would cut through the short term planning and provide for a national fixtures plan for Club and County. A motion that would restore the balance in the GAA.

It is the view of the CPA that the seven motions circulated fall far short of what is required from the leadership of the organisation. Leadership that repeats and uses the rhetoric of the Club and the Club player being at the centre of the GAA. There is a serious discord and disconnect between the idea and the reality in the GAA in the current era, and it is threatening the fabric of our Association.

We are deeply concerned at the direction we are taking as an Association, with a growing imbalance between the income-generating big business wing of the GAA, directed and managed by paid officials, and the volunteer club ethos at local community level. The CPA is firmly in the latter category.

Individual club players and their club officials can decide if the motions circulated address their fundamental concerns about fixtures, about priorities in the GAA, about player welfare, about dropout rates and the future sustainability of their clubs, and about the duration and planning of the playing season.

It is the view of the CPA that these motions are inadequate, and tinker with issues around replays, player release to clubs, the running off of the British GAA championships. These are issues of concern in particular circumstances, but they should be addressed as part of a wider solution and a fixtures masterplan that encompasses club and county players. In reality the motions change little.

Every other national sporting body has a short, medium and long term strategy. Often their funding and accountability is predicated on planning and games development for all units.

As unpaid GAA volunteers embedded in our clubs, we are deeply disappointed that it appears the opportunity has once again been squandered to place the Club, the fundamental unit of our great Association, at the heart of planning and development.

Is it arrogance, a lack of concern for club players, or fear of real meaningful change that prevents our Association from grasping the seriousness of the issues that we face and addressing these fundamental problems?

In recent weeks we have had senior officials commenting on ticket touting, on rock concerts in Croke Park, and television deals, meanwhile the club player sits and wonders whether he should stick around for the summer months.

The CPA presented Croke Park with a national fixture plan some months back that showed how club and county can co-exist.

We pointed out that three critical elements are needed to achieve this harmony.

April designated as a club only month

Club All Irelands played in a calendar year

December a month of downtime and rest for all players.

Why aren’t these being discussed at Central Council or presented in a national strategy? These are issues that benefit the club player in a meaningful way and relate directly to the GAA’s core purpose.

These proposals were widely debated, and received positive feedback among various players, pundits, commentators and administrators. They were not perfect but they were a start.

We have also learned this week that there will be pre Congress meetings in each of the four provinces to brief county boards. At the time of the Super 8 proposals, there were similar roadshows. Each county board is being asked to send their 5 delegates to the pre Congress meeting.

Is every unit that brings forward a proposal afforded the equal option of lobbying county boards throughout the country? Is this the way GAA democracy works?

What is the purpose of these meetings? We are told that GAA is a democratic organisation and we are bound by the vote of Congress. If the GAA is serious about consultation then by all means have open meetings, but engage in an open process that can invite and take on board the views of all members. This has been done in the past for example under GAA Football Review Committee (FRC) led by Eugene McGee.

We sent correspondence to every county board secretary recently inviting and encouraging them to support a motion (that was unanimously agreed in Wexford County Board) at the next Central Council meeting that proposes to free up the month of April for club activity only.

Our hope is that this club friendly motion would be discussed at county board meetings across the country and supported at the Central Council meeting so they can understand that county and club can co-exist and that a master plan is possible with goodwill and engagement by all parties, GAA management, county boards, provincial councils and clubs.

As it stands we speak for the club player, and will continue to do so to give them a voice.