News this week that there will be a split intercounty and club camogie season was met with widespread delight.
However, it seems to have left a trail of destruction behind for club sides who have not yet been able to complete the 2020 provincial and All-Ireland series.
The league/club/intercounty format would have allocated specific weekends for the 2020 club championship to be completed but the switch to the split season does not allow for it.
One of the six senior clubs effected by the decision is Thomastown. They did not get to play the 2020 Leinster final as it did not take place before Level 5 coronavirus restrictions were implemented across the country.
The six clubs still involved have listed four dates in June that they believe would be suitable to facilitate the games and Thomastown senior camogie manager Ger Walsh feels that the Camogie Association’s inability to listen to the clubs is detrimental to the players involved.
He said: “We have had no dialogue or no engagement whether it be good, bad or indifferent.
“You wonder is there any thought process going into this and there doesn’t appear to be any coordination at all. There is no coherent thought put into any of this stuff.”
Walsh, who is also chairman of Thomastown GAA club, said the debacle highlights the Association’s poor treatment of club players.
“We cannot understand why the will is not there to do it. There wasn’t even an explanation given as to why it can’t go ahead. It’s a nonsense. They have absolutely no consideration for the club player,” said Walsh.
The man who led Thomastown to a county final victory in 2020 feels that there may be a more severe impact on Thomastown camogie in the future if the game does not go ahead.
“They can’t seem to grasp or get their head around how much effort the girls have put in. The void that has been left in Thomastown camogie with this decision, I cannot articulate it enough.
“There are young girls who could have seen their heroes play for the club in a Leinster final and now they won’t get that chance for no reason at all.
“I can’t get my head around an association who has no consideration for the club player whatsoever. It’s absolutely dumbfounding.”
Walsh added that he does not foresee any improvement in the Camogie Association for quite some time yet.
“I can’t see this disconnect changing anytime soon. It will be exactly the same in 20 years’ time. Clubs and club players have no say and it’s just a case of do what you’re told. Simple as that.”
In response to Walsh’s criticism, Camogie Association president Hilda Breslin said the following when contacted by Scoreline:
“We went to clubs with two very clear options and the clubs chose the option that they did. The mandate is clear now. There were over 50 games left in the 2020 All-Ireland club championship.
“We understand that those clubs are disappointed, but these are challenging times and 2021 All-Ireland club and U16 & U18 All-Ireland are all to be included.”
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