'We are very concerned and disappointed' - CPA unimpressed with proposed vote on second tier
The Club Players Association (CPA) have expressed their concern and disappointment at the GAA's decision to press ahead with a vote on a second-tier championship at next month's Special Congress in Páirc Uí Chaoimh.
The CPA have come out against such a motion because of the ongoing work of the GAA's own fixtures task force, on which it has representation, and which is working on a series of proposals even as the second-tier competition appears to move closer.
It comes as the GAA extends invitations to county boards to table their own second-tier motions by Friday of this week. Longford submitted a motion to last weekend's Central Council, pointing out that they were against the body's motion which is headed for Special Congress.
Instead, they are recommending that the provincial championships be played off in a shorter time-frame - it's a difficult proposal to deliver, given that there are only two-week breaks between rounds as it is - with a knock-out competition commencing after the provincial action is complete.
Division 1 and 2 teams would be on one side of that draw, according to that year's final National League tables, with the Division 3 and 4 teams on the other side, unless they had secured a provincial title.
Provincial champions would be seeded at one, eight, nine and 16 to avoid each other until the semi-finals, provided they were to reach that stage.
The 16 winners would progress to a second round while the losers would enter a second-tier competition at that point of the season.
In its statement, the CPA voiced concern because of the Task Force’s work in progress.
“We are very concerned and disappointed the management committee has decided to bring forward proposals for the Tier 2 competitions to Special Congress while the Fixtures Calendar Review Taskforce has not yet made its report, recommendations and options as directed when it was established in June,” the CPA said.
“The Taskforce was asked to report by November and its work is ongoing.
“Since our earliest engagement with Croke Park, we’ve argued against this sort of incremental change which has hampered real progress in improving the lot of all players.”