Review group seeks to save minor players from burnout

Proposals by the GAA’s Minor Review Work Group seek to prevent players at minor level from being burned out due to too many demands on their time.

At last night’s Cork County Board meeting at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Central Council delegate Des Cullinane delivered the findings of the group, established in January. While it didn’t sense any strong appetite to change minor to U17, as recommended by the Football Review Group, a decision was taken that U19 should be explored. A pilot, four- team competition, will be run in 2016.

In addition, a strong overlap between club and inter-county minor competitions, as well as post-primary school action, was identified, with a number of adjustments proposed.

Inter-county minors, as well as Leaving Cert and A-level students, will be prevented from playing league and challenge games for their club’s adult sides, while schools and minor competition schedules will be streamlined.

Proposals for the 2015 GAA Congress, supported by Cork and to come into effect from 2016 if passed, want inter-county minor sides to wait until the February mid-term break before starting collective training.

Post-primary schools competitions wouldn’t begin until the second week in October, with club competitions to be completed by then. The schools competitions would be finished by the weekend after St Patrick’s Day, but within those dates the schools would have first call on inter-county minor and U21 players.

Elsewhere, a committee will be tasked with finding Cork U21 and intermediate hurling managers after it was announced Pat Kenneally and Liam Hayes have stepped down.

Meanwhile, the number of club teams in the Kerry Senior Football Championship will be cut from 11 to eight should a proposal be voted through at Tuesday’s county board meeting. A committee, led by Central Competitions Control Committee chairman Tony O’Keeffe, has also proposed two of the nine divisional sides play a preliminary round game, leading to a 16-team championship, eight clubs and eight divisions.

It is proposed that five championship weekends would be set before the Munster SFC final each year and a sixth organised before August 1, with the competition run off after Kerry exit the championship. A realignment of the club championships is also called for, with relegation from senior to intermediate decided by a playoff.


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