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Sports Council off target with aid

Throughout the Olympics we have enjoyed watching fantastic performances from our Olympic athletes, and on their return both Minister Ring and John Treacy rightly applauded them for those performances, and equally rightly, both men have committed to support our Olympic athletes in the future.

Perhaps, as a first step, Minister Ring could talk to Mr Treacy and tell him to sort out the Sports Council’s recognition of the NTSA (the National Governing Body for Olympic Rifle and Olympic Pistol events).

NTSA shooters have represented our country in the Olympic Games in Atlanta and Sydney; they won medals for Ireland internationally this year and smashed Irish records in the process; and one, Seán Baldwin, will be representingIreland in the Paralympics in a matter of days.

Despite all this success, and purely because of political nonsense, the NTSA remains the only Olympic governing body in Irish sport that the Sports Council does not recognise, and their shooters remain our only unsupported Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls.

A single call from the minister could fix this in five minutes, and give our Olympic shooters access to sports facilities, to the ISC High Performance Unit’s services; it would let our internationally-accredited coaches get national accreditation, and it would let us get on with pursuing gold medals abroad on the road to Rio.

Our fellow shooters in Olympic Shotgun have won the World Championships twice with minimal support from the ISC.

We are only asking the minister and Mr Tracey to allow us to do the same.

Mark Dennehy


Dublin 18


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