Wicklow doctor steps down over fixture clash

A doctor involved in looking after Wicklow’s county teams for over 30 years has resigned from the position in protest over they way his club was treated over vital championship matches last weekend.

The Éire Óg club were forced, against their wishes, to play crucial senior football and hurling matches in the space of 24 hours, even though eight players were on both panels, including four who started both games.

After a frustrating week of pleading with county board and fixtures officials, Éire Óg’s hurlers were beaten by five points (3-17 to 4-9) by Glenealy in the county semi-final on Saturday. A day later, their footballers crashed out of the football championship at the quarter-final stage, beaten 2-14 to 1-12 by Baltinglass in a replay.

Dr Brendan Cuddihy, who has had a voluntary association with the Wicklow county board and county teams since 1985, has decided to walk away in the aftermath on his club’s double heartbreak, saying: “I don’t want to be associated with an organisation that doesn’t take player welfare seriously.

“We talk about fairness, but my job as doctor to these players is their welfare. And I have to look at them and say the County Board are making you play two games in less than 24 hours.

“This is very bad practice. You wouldn’t see this happening in other sports. In Wicklow we talk the talk but we don’t walk the walk.”

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