Kettle admits Blue Wave strategy will be ‘hard sell’ for Dubs

Dublin chairman Andy Kettle has revealed his board will be putting forward motions to Congress next year calling for the county to be given provincial status in terms of funding and administration.

As part of the Blue Wave strategic plan 2011-2017 released last November, Dublin GAA chiefs set out the goals to be achieved by the middle of this year.

However, Kettle admitted they have yet to lobby other counties about their ambitious proposals, one of which would see the county chairman given a permanent place on the GAA’s Management Committee.

The Fingal Ravens man said they will shortly begin talks with the Leinster Council about obtaining a regular position on their Coiste Bainisti.

Despite much opposition from outside the county at the time of its publication, the board intend looking for a larger share of central funding as well as representation they see appropriate to Dublin’s size.

“Obviously, it couldn’t happen for this year’s Congress as we wouldn’t have had the motions ready in time,” said Kettle.

“We will do so next year and we will be in discussions with Leinster about representation on the provincial management committee.

“The status with the strategic review plan is that we have identified what steps we need to take to bring it forward.

Former GAA president Christy Cooney and Leinster Council secretary Michael Delaney expressed reservations about the objectives listed by Dublin.

Kettle is hopeful of changing people’s minds but acknowledges they face a touch challenge.

“I wouldn’t think there has been any change. We still have a job of work to do to sell it and we haven’t started on that yet.

“I would say the same opinion is still there because nothing has progressed.”

Kettle also said there is no conflict between the Dublin senior footballers’ plans to stage their own summer camps and the GAA’s Kelloggs Cúl Camps. After successful Easter camps, players such as Bernard Brogan and Eamon Fennell have spoken about hosting more events for children over the coming months.

“All that would be done under the auspices of the coaching and games staff,” said Kettle.

Dublin have no plans to propose a change to the structure of the hurling league despite being relegated from Division 1A less than 12 months after winning the league.

“We’re certainly not where we wanted to be,” conceded Kettle.

“We knew going into it that there was going to be a casualty. We just didn’t expect it to be us. But there are no panic alarms going off. There are another few weeks to go before the championship and although we picked up one or two injuries in a challenge against Limerick (Paul Schutte’s knee) things are coming reasonably right for the guys who have been sidelined long term.”

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