Counties will be permitted to make eight substitutions per game in the upcoming National Camogie League.
At a time when various inter-county GAA managers are calling for more than five substitutions to be allowed in this year’s Allianz Leagues, the Camogie Association has confirmed that teams will again be permitted to make eight substitutions per game in next month’s National Camogie League.
The rule, exclusive to camogie, means managers can replace over half their starting team during a League fixture when games resume in mid-May.
Laois and Mayo football managers Mike Quirke and James Horan, speaking to the Irish Examiner, backed the idea of allowing more substitutes in this year’s Allianz Leagues.
Both managers gave support in principle to increasing the number of substitutes from five so as to prevent injury after a lengthy layoff from games activity and to fully assess their panel.
“I never understood the logic of reducing the six to five. I think it’s the other way we should be going,” said Quirke. “In these exceptional circumstances, I think it’s a huge opportunity to have unlimited substitutes when lads are under pressure to stay playing and then pick up some injury that was probably avoidable if you were able to take him off the field.”
Cork U20 football manager Keith Ricken is another advocate of increasing the limit on substitutions to ensure players can be phased back into match action after five-plus months without a game.
“It wouldn’t be the worst use of common sense if the GAA allowed more subs to be used — especially for the league — to minimise injuries and allow players to get accustomed to the match play tempo,” he said.
The rule allowing an increased number of substitutions in camogie league fixtures was introduced in the middle of the last decade and is applicable at club as well as inter-county level.
“A maximum of eight substitutions may be made in under 14, under 16, under 18 and adult league competitions at all levels. This does not apply to championships at all levels regardless of competition structure or format,” the rule reads.
The National Camogie League throws in on May 15. Division 1 has been split into three groups of three. The quarter-finals, semi-finals, and final will be played across the opening three weekends of June.
There is still no word on the format of the 2021 All-Ireland camogie championship, or when it will commence.
Inter-county camogie players returned to training last Monday, but remain in the dark as to what the camogie championship will look like or when it will be played. Similarly, the LGFA has not released their Championship plans.