posted 1 Jan 2011, 14:16 by Unknown user
updated 1 Jan 2011, 14:16 by Denis Tuohy Agricultural Consultant
AS exclusively revealed in The Clare Champion back in September, the Clare senior football panel for 2011 is set to include a number of players who play their club football in Dublin and Kildare.
A number of players have responded to the call from Clare senior manager Mícheál McDermott and have indicated that they are willing to declare for the Banner County, home of one or both of their parents.
However, it will be the latter stages of the McGrath Cup (if Clare are still involved) or the early rounds of the National League, which begins in February, before any of these players can make their debuts for Clare.
Back in the ’90s, the GAA at national level passed a motion allowing players to declare for the home county of their parents. However, only some counties were designated as being eligible for this scheme and Clare were not one of those. Among those who were designated back then are Leitrim, Fermanagh, Roscommon, Wicklow and Laois.
Around the time the decision was made, Clare football was enjoying great success, having won the Munster senior title.
Leitrim is one of the counties that benefited greatly from this ruling with Declan Darcy captaining them to the Connacht title. Jason Ward was another Dublin-born player who shone for Leitrim for a number of years.
“It’s something we are looking into but it’s very much in its infancy at the moment,” McDermott said in September.
It is understood that Clare GAA has made a request to Central Council to be designated as eligible for this scheme. The December meeting of the council was cancelled due to the inclement weather conditions. This meeting has been rescheduled for January 15, when Clare’s request will be dealt with.
All the indications are that the request will be granted at this meeting. From there, it will go to the Competitions Control Committee for implementation, while the players interested will have to make applications to be allowed to play with Clare.
With Clare’s McGrath Cup campaign beginning with a home tie against UCC at Cooraclare on Sunday, January 9, it is clear that McDermott and his selection committee of Liam McHale and James Foran will not be able to consider David O’Connor (St Bridget’s, Dublin); Niall Browne (Twomilehouse, Kildare) and Adrian Cahill (Celbridge, Kildare) for this one.
In preparation for the new season, Clare will play a challenge game against NUI Galway, managed by former Clare boss John Maughan, on Sunday