Donegal clubs not happy with club championship dates

Tom Comack @dgldemocrat

Donegal GAA clubs have been told to come up with alternative proposals for the playing of this season’s Michael Murphy Senior Football Championship.

This follows objections to a proposal to play the first round of games in the Senior Championship on May 6th/7th and not to play the next round until August, after the All-Ireland quarter-finals.

However, the proposal, which was part of a draft fixtures for both league and championship put before delegates at last Monday night’s monthly meeting of the Donegal county committee, were not adopted.

“A number of the senior clubs were unhappy with the proposals,” Donegal PRO, Ed Byrne, told the Democrat.

“A number of clubs wanted the start of the championship put back until August and it was also suggested that it should not be started until after the All County Leagues were completed.

“The way it has been left is that the clubs have been asked to discuss the matter and to bring back alternative proposals to the March county committee meeting.”

The PRO also confirmed that the draft proposals for the opening six round of games in the All-County Football Leagues had received the go ahead.

However, the Democrat has learned that there is some disquiet among a number of clubs over the start date for the Leagues

The draft fixture plan was produced by the Donegal Competitions Control Committee and covered both league and championship football.

The league season is due to throw-in on Sunday, March 12th (see for full list of draft league games).

The unhappiness with the start date for the league is centred around the close proximity to Donegal’s first round Ulster U-21 championship meeting with Tyrone.

Donegal are due to meet Tyrone in Healy Park, Omagh, on Wed March 15th, just three days after the commencement date of the league.

This will pose a problem for a number of clubs, most notably Gaoth Dobhair, who have eight players in the county U-21 squad.

Naomh Conaill, St Eunan’s and Kilcar are other clubs with a number of players on Declan Bonner’s county U-21 squad.

And should the U-21s advance in the championship it will cause problems right through March and April. If they are successful, the U-21s could be involved until the end of April.

The March county committee meeting is set for March 6th, just six days ahead of start of the All County Leagues.