The Waterford camogie panel have issued a statement expressing their disquiet with the decision to move their All-Ireland camogie championship match against Cork from Saturday to Sunday at short notice.
The fixture has been rescheduled for Walsh Park at 5.30pm on Sunday to avoid a clash with Cork's All-Ireland ladies football championship game against Cavan on Saturday.
The Deise are also frustrated at the abandonment of their game against Tipperary in The Ragg a few weeks ago due to a "lack of medical support" for an injured Tipperary player who was removed to hospital by air ambulance.
The statement in full reads:
"We, the Waterford Senior Camogie panel, are together voicing our frustrations and highlighting the issues we have encountered during the 2019 All Ireland Championship season. We seek to engage with the National Camogie Association to ensure these do not occur again. Rule 33.2 allows for All Ireland Championship match fixtures to be changed with only 5 days' notice.
"The Camogie Association changed the date of our senior All Ireland championship fixture versus Cork due to be played on the 20th July, in accordance with Rule 33.2. The late notice has affected our players. Members of our senior camogie panel work weekends, to finance their college education and fund their sport participation. Late notice impacts upon working hours, causing financial loss. We have a panel member commuting from England to represent her county. For her to play the original fixture date she took holiday leave from work, the late change results in her being unavailable for selection. Players shape their family lives around dedicating time to their sport. Issues on communication in relation to this were confounded by players becoming aware of the fixture change through social media.
"Unfortunately, five days’ notice is within the rules but is not the same for players to give notice to employers, airlines and life logistics. Allowing the change of date of an All Ireland Senior Camogie championship match with 5 days’ notice disrespects the effort of players training since October of last year and who organise their lives based on championship fixture dates set in January.
"We stand with our ladies’ football colleagues and agree no player should be in a situation where they have to choose between representing their county at Camogie or ladies football, which has occurred for players around the country this year, including our own panel member. Our grievance is with the five days’ notice rule for a fixture change and not addressing the clash of fixtures earlier in the year.
"So far this year, we experienced lack of adequate medical support at a championship match resulting in game abandonment and come this Sunday we will have fielded for championship matches 6 weeks in a row. Change needs to happen within the Camogie Association to ensure players are recognized (sic) as athletes.
"We, as a panel, have written to the National Camogie Association to meet with us to ensure these situations do not arise again and action is taken. We call on engagement between the National Camogie Association and the WGPA and on our fellow players to act with us for changes within our sport to allow our game and players flourish.
"We fully support the 20/20 vision, of "If she can’t see it, she can’t be it", we want to inspire young girls to participate in sport and also to speak up, united, to fight to be treated respectfully as athlete."
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