THE announcement by the Camogie Association on Wednesday night that the minor All-Ireland championship has been cancelled for 2020 was greeted with huge shock and disappointment across the country.
That's particularly the case in Cork, who had landed the title in 2018 and 2019 and put huge work in earlier this season to try and make it three in a row.
County boards and managers are up in arms and it is dominating social media conversation.
The reasoning behind it is baffling. The championship is already well underway.
Cork minor manager Jerry Wallace said that he was very upset when he read the statement.
"I have been inundated with phone calls from upset players, parents and clubs. The decision to cancel the All-Ireland minor championship is wrong.
"In my view, this is age discriminatory. The young ladies representing their counties for the most will leave this age group in December 2020. They will never play minor again," said the Midleton club man.
"I fully appreciate the fixtures and organisation’s dilemma to running competitions over a short period of time but saying this, the Camogie Association should not allow the difficulties of the pandemic or logistical organisational concerns stop a championship that started in February 2020 from competition.
"The county boards were hit with this last night with no discussion or warning. This is the first notification they got that the minor championship was being pulled and the leagues discontinued. They could not believe it. I don’t know who took this decision or what was the basis behind it but I think it’s an absolute disgrace. "I have no personal agenda. I have no daughter involved but I’m going to keep trying to get this decision reversed because I think it’s wrong."
The association has stated that a provincial minor championship and the U16 All-Ireland championship will take place between October and December yet both competitions haven’t even started yet. Where’s the reasoning behind that?
Why start a provincial championship which doesn’t have hold half the attraction for players and stop an All-Ireland championship that is well underway? It makes no sense to me and I think It’s the worst call possible.
It’s highlighted year in and year out about the significant drop off in sport of girls in that minor age group bracket. Some of these girls will never get a chance to represent their county again in an All- Ireland championship.
Only a handful will go on to represent their counties at a higher level in the future yet we take that opportunity away from them.
The only age group to have been robbed of playing is minor. Is it because that age group can cross over a number of teams? Cork are going for three in a row.
They are now being robbed of the chance to do this. Three in a row is an incredible achievement in any sport and few if any will ever achieve that.
Cork aside, I’m so disappointed for minor players all over the country.