Update: Women's GPA supports Mayo ladies walk-out over 'personal and sensitive' player welfare issues

Update - 4.20pm: The Women's GPA have come out in support of the decision of 10 Mayo players to step away from the Women's Football panel over player welfare issues.

11-time, All Star Cora Staunton was among the group that took the stand, with an All-Ireland qualifier against Cavan to come in Clones on Saturday.

In a brief statement, the players say their reason for stepping away is for player welfare issues that are personal and sensitive to the players involved.

In a statement, The WGPA acknowledged the situation in Mayo and said they are aware of the issues and "are supporting all of the players".

The WGPA said: "We recognise the physical and emotional commitment required to operate at the top level of our games and respect the decision of all individual players regarding their own personal playing experience.

"The players who have stepped away from the panel at this time have issued the following short statement.

“We have stepped away from the Mayo panel for player welfare issues that are personal and sensitive to the players involved."

"Out of respect to the girls playing at the weekend and ourselves, we will not be commenting further. We wish the Mayo team well with their game on Saturday.”

"We would now appeal that speculation on the matter comes to an end and that all players are supported on and off the field. The WGPA will continue to work with everyone individually and collectively in the best interests of Mayo Ladies Football."

10.04am: Walk-out could mean Cora Staunton has played her last game for Mayo

Cora Staunton may have played her final game for Mayo.

The 11-time All Star is one of 10 players who have walked out of the squad ahead of Saturday's All Ireland Ladies Football qualifier against Cavan in Clones.

Captain Sarah Tierney, vice captain Fiona McHale and team selector Michael McHale have also opted out, with player welfare issues cited for their decision.

Mayo News journalist Edwin McGreal said it could be the end of an era.

He said: "I know that the County Board feel that what plans they had in terms of team selection, in terms of a smooth week in the run-up to this game has been torn asunder."

Ten Mayo players have left the squad in the last week, just ahead of their Championship game against Cavan on Saturday.

McGreal said: "You would have to think that Mayo's season is not going to go much further with the losses that you are talking about here, and it could be the last time we see Cora Staunton in a Mayo jersey."

He told Newstalk's Off the Ball that player welfare issues may be at the centre of the dispute, saying: "The reason from what we have ascertained is they are citing player welfare issues or concerns as the reason, we have no more specific details on that.

"We contacted the county board, we contacted Peter Leahy and we contacted players last night and there were no comments from players or the management."


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