CPA urges counties to reject plan for 'experimental' arrangement
The decision to seek a temporary, rather than permanent, change to the All-Ireland football championship format has hardened the resolve of the Club Players' Association to persuade counties to oppose the move.
Having already called on Central Council to withdraw the proposal to replace the football quarter-finals with a 'round robin' series, the CPA was dismayed to learn that Congress will be asked to support it on a three-year experimental basis.
That increases the prospects of it being accepted, a development which the CPA believes is damaging for club players.
"The way the motion has been adapted makes it more likely to win support than if it called for a permanent change. Our fear is that if the experimental period is agreed on, there will be little meaningful work done on overall fixtures planning for those three years," said CPA chairman Micheál Briody.
The CPA has written to GAA director-general Páraic Duffy asking that Central Council withdraw the motion and instead undertake a radical overhaul of the entire fixtures plan.
The CPA will meet Duffy next week but it's highly unlikely that the Central Council motion will be withdrawn. It also includes bringing forward the dates of the hurling and football finals and while the CPA welcomes any move to provide more room for club activity, it wants more radical action.
It has written to county boards outlining its position and is also seeking support for a motion from Tipperary and Wexford, seeking to have the CPA formally recognised by the GAA as the club players' representative body.
"All we want is to be recognised in the same way as the GPA is for inter-county players," said Briody.
He also revealed that membership of the CPA has reached 20,000 one month after its official launch.