Saturday 23 March 2019

Clare club want new age restriction on inter-county minor squads

A Clare club want inter-county minor squads to be restricted to U-17s only, excluding players from U-16 downwards.. Stock photo: Sportsfile
A Clare club want inter-county minor squads to be restricted to U-17s only, excluding players from U-16 downwards.. Stock photo: Sportsfile
Colm Keys

Colm Keys

A Clare club want inter-county minor squads to be restricted to U-17s only, excluding players from U-16 downwards.

If the proposal is successful it would mean that eligible players would be county minors for just one year from 2020 onwards.

Éire Óg are bringing the motion to Congress on Saturday because they feel the establishment of an U-17 inter-county competition has "negatively impacted" on the running of U-16 hurling and football competitions in the county.

Clare play U-16 football prior to the summer exams with hurling competitions after those exams.

They also feel that players who are part of development squads for four years would have a better chance of representing their county at the end of that cycle if it was limited to players of their own age group.

"The inter-county development competitions commence at U-14 grade and in just his fourth year on development squads an U-17 player can be dropped from the inter-county panel, replaced by a player who is in only his third year on development squads i.e. U-16," Éire Óg pointed out in a submission to the Clare convention.

Talent

Meanwhile, a motion by the newly-formed talent academy and player development review committee to switch the uniform age grades for Gaelic games to odd numbers (13, 15, 17 and 19) to better align with new inter-county grades will be withdrawn from Congress this weekend.

Support for the switch, which would see primary grades move from the traditional even numbers (12, 14, 16 and 18) has been low.

The committee, headed by Kilkenny hurling selector Michael Dempsey, has also recommended the establishment of a central games development committee and the appointment, rather than the election, of a coaching officer in each county.

Irish Independent

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