By John Coleman
Cork manager Paudie Murray yesterday hit back at UCC Ladies Football chiefs in a row over dual players.
On Saturday night UCC boss Shan Ronayne claimed Murray's management had stopped two players - Meabh Cahalane and Hannah Looney - from lining out in the university's O'Connor Cup semi-final with UL earlier that day (a game which UCC lost).
Ronayne told Red FM: "I don’t think it’s very fair on the players involved. It’s certainly a move that just has to be condemned. It’s a move that we’re very very angry about. It’s very underhand from the Cork camogie management. I’ve no problem saying that.”
But after Cork's victory over Limerick in yesterday's Littlewoods Ireland Camogie League semi-final, Murray fired back at those claims.
“The keyboard warriors never worry me. I think that the day that they start talking about you is the day that you’re in trouble! It doesn’t worry me whatsoever what they call me, but just to address it all.
“On Tuesday night we had ten injuries, Laura Treacy had the vomiting bug for the last three days and only struggled out of bed this morning to play. Eighteen players, that’s what we had today."
This decimation of the squad, along with the Cork Intermediate’s team game in Wexford was obviously a factor in the already problematic clash with the O’Connor Cup. Three Cork players were on both panels and while Meabh Cahalane and Hannah Looney didn’t travel to the O’Connor Cup, Libby Coppinger did.
“On January 2nd we brought it to the attention of the girls playing O’Connor Cup that there was a clash,” Murray said.
“We told them that if we were in a semi-final what we would be expecting. We made numerous attempts (to resolve the situation). I was at a WGPA meeting and I did bring it up with people in both football and camogie organisations.
“We went as far as last week to request the Intermediate game to be changed to Saturday to facilitate these girls in that it would mean that we would have some of the Intermediate players to work off today. That was declined.
“This didn’t rear its head this week, people were well aware of what was happening. I think UCC did very little.
“If they’d won Saturday, where would they be today? We would have had 15 players, that’s the first thing, and there is no way that UCC would have left those girls come on a bus yesterday evening and come down to play with us.
“I’ve a brother that has been involved with the UCC Sigerson football panel for the last ten years. They have come up against inter-county the whole time, they respect it, they treat things with a bit of class.
“We have done everything possible. I would question what UCC have done.”