Kevin O’Donovan urges Cork to reject U17/U19 inter-county age grade advice

Cork GAA secretary Kevin O’Donovan wants the county to reject the advice of the Croke Park taskforce to have U19 as the final inter-county age grade right before senior.

U17 and U19 is the most popular inter-county selection of the Croke Park taskforce, but O’Donovan, who is in favor of U18 and U20/21, claims the Croke Park mixture leaves too lots of gaps that county boards need to then phase in and fill by developing progress squads, as is the case presently.

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At past week’s special Cork county board meeting to listen to clubs’ most well-liked age grades, there was an overpowering vast majority in favor of restoring insignificant to U18 at inter-county level, accompanied by possibly the standing quo of U20 or the old U21 grade finished away with at the conclusion of the very last decade.

Cork secretary O’Donovan is of the identical perspective.

“U17 and U19, which seems like currently being proposed, I hope Cork would reject. I hope Cork would essentially contemplate a countermotion of U18 and U20/21,” claimed O’Donovan.

“I’ll never die over U20 or U21, hardly ever absolutely sure which is the appropriate one particular. If you go to U21, there is more of an overlap with the senior inter-county workforce, but you get far more progress.

“If you go to U20, there is a lot less of an overlap and so it is much easier, but you lower the improvement by a yr. It can be a toss of a coin genuinely and I you should not know the remedy.”

What he is significantly a lot more particular of are the challenges that will continue to crop up if U17 is held as the minor age quality at inter-county and U20 drops to U19.

“The challenge with U17 and U19, and the trouble at the moment with U17 and U20 is we [Cork officials] are, on a every day foundation, having a dialogue about our inter-county gamers. This year’s two very superior minimal groups, we have to glance at people players’ enhancement and they are now wanting at a gap of 17 to 20 where we have to kind some variety of a growth squad at U18 mainly because they is not going to be very good sufficient to make the Cork U20 squad next year, and they will need even further advancement.

“And if you really don’t acquire inter-county players on a continual pathway, they are just going to get hurt. And you know the accidents we have experienced at inter-county amount in the latest yrs. You can’t choose them off that treadmill.

“We all want them to engage in with their clubs, but they should have inter-county preparation by their side all the time in terms of aid because they are education at such a superior amount. So, we have a challenge there and we have a hole there at U18. We have to fill it. We have to kind some kind of a development squad there.”

Ought to Croke Park triumph at future year’s Congress in voting by means of the U17/U19 combo, O’Donovan warns that crevices will promptly show up in the significant place involving U19 and senior as all bar the fantastic number of 19-yr-olds will be all set to step into a senior inter-county squad.

“If you have U17/U19, then we are on the lookout at players at 20, 21 not ready for senior squads. You are going to say mail them back to their golf equipment, but in fairness to the clubs they are dealing with into a very well-gained split at the instant and hopefully for the future 5 months until eventually the county leagues get started in March.

“It seems honest to carry inter-county age grades down to reduce the overlap with clubs, but what you variety is improvement gaps and that forces us to come into the gap with a lot more squads, which is the very last issue clubs want. So, you have the reverse effect of what you desired.”

O’Donovan’s comments chime with people of new Cork U20 hurling supervisor Ben O’Connor. The three-time All-Ireland winner advised this newspaper last thirty day period that U18 and U21 need to hardly ever have been touched in the 1st place.

Cork vice-chairman Pat Horgan is one more whose desire is for U18 and U21.

“U19 is basically completely wrong,” Horgan was a short while ago quoted in the Examiner. “It is way too considerably of a hole as the final age team before senior. Not every county will create a David Clifford-form player who can seamlessly slide in with the seniors. We need to have to continue on their enhancement right up until at the very least 20 or 21 to give them a possibility to make senior panels.

“If U19 is carried, you are going to have 19-yr-olds on an prolonged senior panel, a large quantity of them, and they will be at a reduction to their golf equipment for months of the yr.”

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