Limited success at hockey’s AGM

Life begins as a limited company for Irish Hockey on July 1 following an emphatic vote at the Irish Hockey Association’s AGM in Dublin on Saturday but clubs rejected a proposed €233 levy for the next two years.

The motion to move to a limited company was supported by 53 votes to two, with the new structure offering protection to clubs and the board in the case of dissolution of the association, limiting liability to €1.

The IHA’s hopes of levying clubs to cover the a €60,000 deficit are dead in the water for now, however, after that motion was defeated by 32 votes to 24.

Club delegates suggested that while the idea of a levy would find favour, it was pitched badly and at the wrong time, while the single price regardless of size of club was a particular bone of contention.

Helen Lynch suggested that clubs like her own Cork Church of Ireland found it difficult to support a further levy when they already felt they were not receiving much for their affiliation fee and their decision can be seen as something of a “backlash”.

At a time when no Irish senior men’s training camps were being held in the province among other issues, there was a feeling of being disenfranchised and disconnected in Munster — something backed up by Cork Harlequins representative, John Hobbs.

Much of the rest of the meeting’s debate centred on finances — specifically fears that Electric Ireland’s sponsorship of the women’s national team, worth over €100,000, may not continue beyond the autumn.

The future of the National Indoor Trophy was also up for debate; some called for it to be scrapped as it was loss-making in 2012 and does not have sufficient support from Irish clubs, but others wished to see it expanded and reformed.

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