Offaly GAA To Attempt To Fix ‘Issues’
Written 2 weeks ago by Ben Finnegan
Offaly GAA chairman Tommy Byrne is set to meet with management and players this week in a bid to fix a number of ‘issues’ following their relegation from Division One B of the Allianz National Hurling League.
He insists that the problems are not related to resources and that manager Kevin Martin and his back room team have received everything they’ve requested.
Mr Byrne told delegates at last night’s county board meeting that demotion to the third flight for 2020 shouldn’t have happened and expressed his belief that the team’s performances have been below their abilities both collectively and individually.
He added that there’s every chance that things can be turned around ahead of their McDonagh Cup campaign and appealed to clubs to drum up support for the team.
Raheen’s John Hackett labeled Offaly’s home support ‘embarrassing’ in the relegation playoff defeat to Carlow, and stated that he feels there’s a disconnect with fans.
Both Mr Hackett and Clara GAA chairman Brian Gavin advocated playing some of Offaly’s Division Two A games in 2020 in St Brendan’s Park.
Former All Ireland Final referee Gavin argued the games next year won’t attract large crowds to O’Connor Park and that the team would a better chance of success with a larger support in Birr.
Legendary goalkeeper Damien Martin agreed, saying it would be worth ‘five points’ – he added that Offaly’s low attendances are due to high expectation levels and appealed for supporters to now rally behind the players.
Birr GAA chairman Willie Rigney says they’re currently working on new dressing rooms and would be happy to cater for League games next season.
Meanwhile a vote on the future of amalgamated teams at underage levels was pushed back with more meetings planned between clubs and the county board.
An Edenderry proposal for a working group to be established to report back on those meetings was accepted.