Louth GAA chiefs face backlash over 'rash' change to leagues

Clubs who had been in the chase for promotion to senior and intermediate levels are believed to be discussing what steps they can take to counter the decision
Louth GAA chiefs face backlash over 'rash' change to leagues

A general view of the Gaelic Grounds in Drogheda, Co Louth. Picture: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

A number of clubs in Louth are considering their options following the county board’s decision to cancel promotion and relegation in this year’s leagues.

While the remaining games will be played, the county’s management committee on Sunday declared that, due to Covid-related postponements and clubs have been without players as a result of positive cases and close contacts, they will count for nothing. Those who finish top of their tables will be declared winners but victors in lower divisions will not play in higher ones in 2022.

Clubs who had been in the chase for promotion to senior and intermediate levels are believed to be discussing what steps they can take to counter the decision.

County chairman Peter Fitzpatrick, who said 12 games last week had to be postponed as a result of positive cases, explained the three electoral areas in Louth are among “the top five or six in the whole country for Covid cases at the moment”.

The decision, which has created a divide among county board officials, has been received poorly by those clubs looking to jump grades, while former Louth captain Seamus O’Hanlon has also criticised the move.

“While I agree that some action needed to be taken to address the current Covid situation that exists in many clubs across the county, this unilateral decision seems a little rash,” he wrote in his column in The Argus.

“Other options I feel could and should have been explored included a temporary postponement to see if the short-term situation might improve, reverting to a knock-out championship or have promotion only this season with double relegation in 2022.”

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