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Carrigdhoun Hurlers Exit Championship

JJ Hurley


 



Carrigdhoun's decision to withdraw from the senior divisional championship has opened a conversation about the South East's participation in the competition in the future.

 

It's believed the Carrigdhoun management informed the County Board after its proposed panel was whittled down from 24 to 12 on Monday night, as the opening match in the competition loomed against Duhallow next week.

 

With a proud history in the competition, team manager Declan O'Neill described the decision as very sad.

 

Outlining the difficulties the Carrigdhoun management team faced, "The reason we have withdrawn is because we can't get commitment from players," Declan said.

 

Outlining those difficulties, he pointed to a potential seven players travelling to America on J1 Visas, with Declan adding, "You can't blame them for that."

 

"You have clubs that are flat out, with a lot of injuries, and I don't know how many clubs I have rang over the past six weeks for a challenge match, and it is impossible to get one."

 

"We were looking at players and trying to get together over the past few weeks. As you know, we had very bad weather with pitches, so then clubs were playing catch-up and with teams playing different nights, and we just couldn't get together." 

 

One team that would benefit from allowing their players to appear in the senior ranks was Belgooly, with their impressive centre forward Eoin O' Donovan expected to lead the Carrigdhoun line.

 

Fresh from his recent duties with the Cork minors and set to return to the helm at Belgooly, team manager Seanie McGrath said, "While I am looking from the outside in, it is disappointing because it gives some players an opportunity they may not otherwise have." 

 

 

Togging out for their divisional team has always brought players to the attention of selectors on the county scene. 

 

Valley Rovers, Brendan O'Sullivan and Ballinhassig's Seanie McCarthy secured All-Ireland medals in the 80s, thanks to appearances on the Carrigdhoun senior team.

 

Demands on players have changed, "On the surface, you would think they are a very good side, but there are time constraints," said Eddie Murphy, Carrigaline's hurling team manager.

 

"You must understand the season is very compressed when the league is finished; you only have four to five weeks to prepare for the championship, and little time is available."

 

When comparing the divisions of Imokilly and the Carrigdhoun, "Imokilly are superbly organised, and they are predominantly a hurling division," Eddie said.

 

However, having worked with Duhallow previously, Eddie pointed to the success of any divisional side as creating an atmosphere similar to a club team.

 

He began his preparation before Christmas, with Monday nights set aside for the divisional side to train.

 

Reflecting on the role of the divisional teams, "I often thought it gave junior players a platform to play senior hurling, and I think it worked well, but maybe the days of the divisional side are numbered?" Eddie concluded. 




 

 

 

 

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