Streaming camogie games even when fans return can grow the sport

New audience accessed Cork inter-county and club games during lockdown
Streaming camogie games even when fans return can grow the sport

Cork's Chloe Sigerson with Ann Dalton and Anna Farrell of Kilkenny. Picture: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

PAUDIE Murray has informed the Cork county camogie board that he is prepared to stay as senior manager for 2021. 

The full management are yet to be ratified by the board. Matters are a lot slower this year due to Covid. 

Typically, Cork are training at this stage but group activity is stopped for now and I’m sure players are individually training at this point. 

Paudie has indicated that if and once ratified he will be reviewing his panel for 2021. 

We are also still waiting for the inter-county fixtures to be finalised.

Cork manager Paudie Murray disputes a decision against Kilkenny at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
Cork manager Paudie Murray disputes a decision against Kilkenny at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

There have been a number of changes to the Cork Camogie board for 2021. Some are enforced due to a cap on the length of term a position can be held. 

Mary McSweeney stepped down as chairperson. She did a tremendous job and thankfully another excellent knowledgeable camogie chairperson has been found in Ballincollig’s Mairéad O’Donovan. Mary will remain as a member of GPC and will no doubt still be a regular presence in Castle Road.

Vice-chair is Ballinora’s Rachel Wycherley, Tracey Sheehan remains as Secretary and Marian McCarthy as treasurer. Midleton’s Darina Foley is registrar, Esther O’Leary continues as development officer and Blackrock’s Louise Weldon has taken on the role of PRO. 

It’s a very good mix of board regulars and new additions leading to familiarity as well as new ideas. Louise intends to promote wellbeing and mental health awareness as part of her PRO role particularly amongst younger players and to that end in conjunction with Blackbee and Jigsaw Cork will be running a 5k run on the last weekend of February. 

The 5k will be called Camán Corcaigh and funds raised will be split between Cork camogie and Jigsaw Cork.

RETIREMENT:

Big news this week is that Ann Dalton, Kilkenny’s most versatile player over the past 15 seasons, has retired from intercounty camogie. She walks away with two All-Ireland senior titles and six All-Star awards. 

A player that caused the opposition massive problems regardless of the position she held, moving from defence to midfield to forward where she got the important goal for Kilkenny in their All Ireland semi-final victory over Cork in Páirc Uí Chaoimh. Kilkenny trailed by six points in the opening half only to be a point ahead at half time due to Dalton’s goal. 33 in May, Ann is a huge loss to the Cats, heavy boots to fill.

Limerick Camogie have confirmed Knockainey native Pat Ryan as their new inter-county manager.

Ryan is to take charge of the Limerick senior and junior teams this season. His appointment was confirmed at a Limerick county board meeting on Monday night.

A former player and manager of his native Knockainey hurlers, Ryan will bring a wealth of experience to the role. A bank official, when work took Ryan to Belfast in 2019, he was Antrim senior camogie manager and coach to the Queen's University camogie side. When work took Ryan to Kerry in 2013-2015 he served as manager to senior club side Causeway and was involved with the Kerry minor hurlers that won the 2013 All-Ireland MHC B title.

Ryan will look to steady the ship after a somewhat turbulent period for Limerick camogie, which included nine players from the 2019 panel withdrawing from the set-up ahead of the 2020 campaign.

Limerick showed promise up to a few years ago but it all fell asunder. They lost all three of their 2020 championship fixtures. There are a lot of problems some of which were publicly aired last year. 

There’s a lot of relationships to be rebuilt primarily between the board and players and how the players feel they are being treated. There’s a long road ahead before Limerick get back to the heights of three or four years ago.

I wonder if games will be streamed again this year even if crowds are permitted to attend. The volume of viewers far exceeded the numbers that attend games and it brought Camogie to a much wider audience. 

The numbers at one point I saw logged in to view the Cork versus Wexford group game was 4,200. You’d be lucky to get 200 to actually attend. Many people tuned in to counties outside of their own playing and there’s certainly room for thought to continue this. 

I think people that normally attend games will still attend while many others will view remotely and that can only be a win for the game.

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