A motion to allow Moneygall and Clonakenny amalgamate for U-16 Hurling and football purposes, criticism on the decision by Congress to abolish the U-12 hurling and football championship for 2011 and the election of officers were the main topics of a well attended County Bord na nOg Convention held in Hayes Hotel, Thurles.
Clonakenny moved the motion on the amalgamation issue. The motion was worded: Amalgamation of Clonakenny and Moneygall for U-16 Hurling and Football purposes for 2011 competition and to play in the mid Championship.
John Ryan, Chairman of the Clonakenny club, spoke on behalf of the motion. He said that his club would like to join with Moneygall and play U-16 hurling and football in the Mid Championship. He said the numbers are low in the club. They have six players on the age of sixteen. Moneygall have four.
Stephen Kenny, Moneygall supported the motion. He strongly emphasised that his club would have no team without an amalgamation. It was that simple.
It was pointed out that Moneygall joined with Ballinahinch to win the North U-14 B hurling championship in 2009.
Chairman Sean Creamer questioned the if the County Bord was in a position to allow two teams form two separate divisions form an amalgamation. He added that the Bord would have to refer the proposal to the Senior Bord for advice.
There were two other motions on the Clar. Killenaule moved the motion – That in the interest of games promotion every effort should be made to rescind the decision taken at Congress 2010 regarding the U-12 competitions.
Joe Dwyer, Killenaule, was very emphatic that the Board should leave no stone unturned over the next 12 months to have the U-12 rule rescinded. He added that Croke Park does not realise the harm they are doing by abolishing the competition.
A Fethard motion asked that as it is now regarded as the correct procedure for players to be contacted via group texts (preferably) we ask that it should be standard practise for the club Secretary's contact numbers to be included also. This motion was recommended.
U-12 Decision Under Fire
Outgoing County Bord Secretary was somewhat saddened and not convinced about the decision to abandon the U-12 hurling and football championships following a decision made at congress last Spring.
He said in his report that this year has been a watershed one regarding the U-12 competition in both codes.
"As from next year on, there will be no under 12 championships resulting from a ruling made at Congress. It is regrettable that those entrusted with our Juvenile structures are often left out of the loop when decisions pertaining to them are being discussed at preliminary stages – final decisions.
"However, whatever the merits of the new system, that is now in place from 2011 onwards we in Bord na nOg have to embrace them for the good of our young players. It is apparent that some within the association are oblivious to the threats from other codes when they are deciding what is good for the future regarding the nurturing of future players.
"The argument regarding the welfare of our young participants is often hard to reconcile. As an organisation, the Gaelic Athletic Association preach their gospel of all the benefits they offer for the well being of our youth and at the same time they profit from the proceeds from accepting sponsorship from a company producing alcohol. It's sad that generating revenue takes preference over setting good example to our young players.
The secretary received some support in his argument from Aodan Wrenn, Secretary of Cumman na mBunscoil who said that he was sad to see the demise of the U-12 championships.
"I remember my club Saint Senans, Limerick, winning a three in a row U-12 divisional football championships (1990, '91 and '92) and two County titles in '91 and '92. It was a real thrill. Croke Park has made a mistake in abolishing the U-12 championships. The Go-Game module has failed in terms of the name 'Go- Game' itself. Tipperary Cumman Na mBunscol is to take up a new type module at U-11 level which is similar to the ordinary game except with one catch and strike with no solo and a maximum of eleven a-side. It is hoped to improve the skill level of the weaker player.
County Senior Board Chairman Barry O'Brien compleminted the Board on its successful year.
"It was a great year for the county not alone at senior level but at Juvenile level also. The Tip U-16s won the Tipperary Supporters All-Ireland. Tipp were also successful in Football, claiming the Humphrey Kelleher U-15 Football and Munster U-16 Football.
He also thanked everyone for organising events when receiving the Liam McCarthy Cup
"I would like to thank the clubs who organised the school visits when receiving the Liam McCarthy Cup. The excitement surrounding the visits was brilliant.
And he had a word to say about young players. "It is important to keep players playing. I would like to see a fair response to the motions on the clar.
Nicholas Moroney (Coaching and Development Officer with the County Board) complimented the Secretary on his report and complimented the Board on its successful activities over 2010. He added that Board will have to make the new U-12 Go Game as attractive as possible.
"We must make the games as attractive as possible. Kids come and play hurling because the Association provides the very best and kids realise this. Contrary to common feeling that Croke Park is negative in promoting the games for the young, I have to tell you that Pat Daly, Coaching and Games manager in Croke Park has children of his own playing U-12 hurling. We have to get on with the GO Games," said Nicholas.
John Smith, County Board Officer, said that the Board should embrace the Go Games for at least the year and went on to be critical of the five year rule regarding Board officers stepping down.
"The Bord should embrace the Go Games for at least the year but if it does not work we should try and revert to the status quo in 2012. I also think that the five year rule is good but I think it is unfair that an officer cannot go back to take up the same position again. It's unfair. Both Niall and Frank Morris are stepping down and we are going to be sorely missed," he said.
Chairman Sean Creamer said that 2010 will be long remembered for the success of the Tipperary seniors, U-21s and U-21 football. At Juvenile level he said there was tremendous success at U-16 Hurling as well as the U-15 and U-16 footballers. "After 15 years of trying the U-15 Footballers won the Humphrey Kelleher," he said.
He complimented the various clubs in organising tournaments. "I compliment the West Tipp Division on their organisation of the Tipperary Supporters All-Ireland U-16 Hurling Tournament. Well done to Borris-Ileigh in once again organising the successful Peadar Cummins, Toomevara on the Roger Ryan and Clonoulty for the Garda Cup.
"I would like to pay tribute to our outgoing Treasurer, Frank Morris. He is stepping down after 16 years at the helm. I thank you Frank,"
He added. "In the era in which wo live in presently, I think that this provides the opportunity to get involved at coaching with their clubs.