Wednesday 26 July 2017

With friends like these. . .

(How top GAA officials deserted the inter-provincials)

"As a point of information, the inter-provincials were not played last year. Did anybody notice?" -- John Prenty, Connacht Council secretary (2011)

"I don't believe there will be a push to have them reinstated. I would have been a supporter of the Railway Cup over the years, but I think they've seen their day." -- Christy Cooney, GAA President (2010)

"I am convinced that the competitions have no future. Our members and supporters have voted with their feet. They see them as glorified exhibition games." -- Paraic Duffy, GAA Director-General (2009)

"I make no bones about it -- they may be gone past their sell-by date. The reality is our fixtures programme is too cluttered and we need to make time for club competitions." -- Nickey Brennan, then GAA President (2008)

"For the coming year, the hurling finals are being played in Abu Dhabi. Will this be Yabba Dabba Do for the inter-provincials? Maybe Fred Flintstone will get a game." -- John Prenty (2009)

"With the GAA calendar stretching from January to September and club competitions already squeezed, it is hard to see where a reasonable time slot can be found for this competition to survive." -- Pat Fitzgerald, Munster Council secretary (2009)

"We hear a lot about how interested the players are, but that seems to apply mainly when an overseas trip is in question. We had no difficulty collecting up players for Rome, Paris and Boston -- it was a much different story for Fermoy in October." -- Michael Delaney, Leinster Council Secretary (2008)

"In hurling, we (Connacht) defeated Ulster in the semi-final and Munster in the final. I did not notice any bonfires blazing from Tullaghan to Gort to celebrate victory." -- John Prenty (2005)

"I cannot be hypocritical about these competitions. They have done their duty and should be allowed to die." -- Michael Delaney (2002)

Irish Independent

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