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 Cork's Moira Barrett and Kilkenny's Aobha O'Gorman in a recent Division 2 camogie league outing. Picture: Dylan Vaughan.
Cork's Moira Barrett and Kilkenny's Aobha O'Gorman in a recent Division 2 camogie league outing. Picture: Dylan Vaughan.
SOCIAL BOOKMARKS

A dispute kept the Cork camogie team out of the All-Ireland for eight seasons

AT this stage I’d imagine that the Camogie association will cancel the latter stages of the National League.

While if that happens it’ll be disappointing, imagine how the athletes that spent the last four years preparing for the Olympics feel.

The Olympics will go ahead in 2021 but athletes plan the timing of their preparation so diligently that this is certainly a big upset for them.

In addition, as we all know, there are seasons that you feel on top of the world and your performances match that, but there are seasons when you might put in the same effort and it just doesn’t work for you.

So, the Olympic re-fixture will be a huge disappointment for some, but all acknowledge the wider picture of public health. A year is a long time in sport.

Cork are in prime position to win the league.

They lag behind in group games due to the weather causing the postponement of their away games to both Offaly and Clare and then Covid-19 kicked in.

Tipperary are already through to the final from group 2.

If Cork beat Offaly they can’t be caught on scoring difference even if they went down to Clare.

Based on history and current form between Cork and Tipp, Cork are still the better side despite the introduction of a few new players.

I don’t think Paudie Murray’s real concern is whether the league is cancelled or not.

I think what he would regret is not having the remaining three games as a run in to championship.

It would have been an uplifting start for the new panellists to feel success with the league and give them a taste of what can be achieved, but it’s not the end of the world.

At this stage all counties are in the same boat preparation wise. It will depend on the personal drive and commitment of the players to train somewhat while in isolation and that will determine how much work is to be done for championship as a group when squads return.

With regards the championship who knows what will happen. We expect that order will be restored in time for June but who knows?

The situation had me wondering if the All-Ireland senior camogie championship was ever cancelled.

It doesn’t seem to have been, even in the war years.

Cork, however, didn’t partake in the All-Ireland senior championship from 1944 to 1951.

A disagreement between Cork and both the Munster and Central Councils led to Cork being left out in the cold for eight years.

A special meeting was called in 1944 to reform Munster Council. With Tipperary, Clare and Waterford on board, Fr O’Flynn of Waterford made a strong appeal for Cork to join the new council and help to make Camogie strong in the province once again.

Cork’s delegate Idé Bean Uí Shé outlined a number of conditions that Cork required to be fulfilled, including an all- female Munster Council. Cork’s request was refused.

When the names went into the hat later in the meeting for the Munster Championship draw there was no slip of paper with the name Cork on it.

Mid-Cork under their own West Cork Divisional Board at the time joined the other Munster counties in the hat and were drawn away to Clare. Cork were out of the Munster championship and therefore the All-Ireland series.

Mid-Cork didn’t have any success in Munster. In 1945 the conflict continued and there was no sign of light until 1949 where a move towards unity seemed to be in the air.

Central Council received a letter in March 1949 stating that Cork desired Camogie to be run by women with no man holding an official position.

It also requested that income be used to cover the expenses of playing games instead of being diverted into administrative expenses.

The communication concluded that they considered these demands to be very reasonable and that they were the only things preventing unity on the Cork side.

Sheila McAnulty from Warrenpoint, in Down, set about bringing the various factions and splinter groups of camogie together when she was elected President of the association.

She reported to Central Council on her initial contact with Cork. She considered the position to be very delicate and thought that the Cork people themselves were the only ones who could right it.

There was a growing feeling within Cork that the stand taken in relation to male officials had gone too far.

The status of Cork had tumbled, and scores of players had been denied the privilege of representing their county.

An impromptu meeting of Central Council was held after congress in April 1951. It was underlined that agreement with the Cork board must be reached within the Constitution of what was then called Cumann Camógaíochta na nGael.

The initial meeting was considered satisfactory. Progress continued to be made.

On January 26, 1952 Cork’s affiliations were accepted and permission to participate in the competitions and activities of the association was extended to Cork.

The chapter was closed on Cork’s darkest hour. A cloud was lifted and replaced by a buzz around the county.

It was 1970 before Cork lifted the O’Duffy Cup again.

 The Cork team which defeated Kilkenny in All-Ireland Senior Camogie final in 1972 and 12 months later completed the four in a row. Back: B Sugrue, P Moloney, L Garvan, A McAuliffe, M Sweeney, M McCarthy, D Sutton, R Hennessy. Front: A Keane, A Comerford, N Guilly, H Dineen, M Whelton, S Dunne, M Costine. Subs not in picture: S Dunne, N Guiley, A Keane. 

The Cork team which defeated Kilkenny in All-Ireland Senior Camogie final in 1972 and 12 months later completed the four in a row. Back: B Sugrue, P Moloney, L Garvan, A McAuliffe, M Sweeney, M McCarthy, D Sutton, R Hennessy. Front: A Keane, A Comerford, N Guilly, H Dineen, M Whelton, S Dunne, M Costine. Subs not in picture: S Dunne, N Guiley, A Keane. 

But they did it in style by winning four in a row, never since achieved by the county.