Donegal Forum

Intermediate Championship

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Division one-16 teams play everyone once which is 15 games. Then you've four guaranteed games at championship.

Division two 12 teams who all play intermediate.

Division three 12 teams.

Two up two down in leagues and that decides what championship you play at.

In Derry I'm pretty sure winning intermediate doesn't guarantee you the right to play senior the following year. It's all about leagues.

Would make leagues more important here in Donegal if it was decided like that.

ballboy101 (Donegal) - Posts: 155 - 29/09/2020 17:35:02    2294772

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I suppose the issue with restructuring is that clubs who are struggling to stay in the senior or intermediate championship will vote against any proposals that will disrupt the status quo that keeps them in their respective championships. I recall Ardara and others voting against league restructures when it put them at risk of relegation. Hopefully there is enough common sense in the county board and a desire to fix this problem.

There are a number of good suggestions here. Any one of them would be better than what we have. I may be wrong but I think it was around 2011 that the current system came in? Before that, your championship was decided by your league position (although I think championship winners went up ad well).

DL_Man (Donegal) - Posts: 89 - 30/09/2020 12:13:32    2294869

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I suppose there are a few ways of looking at it.

There is a school of thought that clubs should always aspire to play at the highest level they can. Players want to test themselves at the highest possible standard. Fair enough. But say you're a club that's consistently shipping hammerings in the senior championship? And your season basically hinges on winning one or two games in order to retain senior championship status? Does that motivate all players?

Another view might be that a club might be better off dropping down a grade to regroup? But the counter argument to that is that it could be a long time before you get back up to senior.

I suppose it's up to each individual club to decide what direction they want to take. Taking a couple of clubs, just as an example Termon & Four Masters. Fair play to both, they got the results they needed to stay senior, but not before suffering a few hammerings. Both clubs have had a lot of underage success recently and will surely be strong at senior level in a couple of years. Would a spell at Intermediate be any harm? They would both undoubtedly be among the favourites to win it. Players could get used to winning championship games, experiencing the pressure of semi finals and finals etc. Or would they be better served up at senior, taking a few hammerings but learning about the pace, physicality needed at that level?

I'm not advocating one approach over the other - just interested to hear peoples thoughts.

Lockjaw (Donegal) - Posts: 7075 - 01/10/2020 10:08:38    2294985

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Replying To Lockjaw:  "I suppose there are a few ways of looking at it.

There is a school of thought that clubs should always aspire to play at the highest level they can. Players want to test themselves at the highest possible standard. Fair enough. But say you're a club that's consistently shipping hammerings in the senior championship? And your season basically hinges on winning one or two games in order to retain senior championship status? Does that motivate all players?

Another view might be that a club might be better off dropping down a grade to regroup? But the counter argument to that is that it could be a long time before you get back up to senior.

I suppose it's up to each individual club to decide what direction they want to take. Taking a couple of clubs, just as an example Termon & Four Masters. Fair play to both, they got the results they needed to stay senior, but not before suffering a few hammerings. Both clubs have had a lot of underage success recently and will surely be strong at senior level in a couple of years. Would a spell at Intermediate be any harm? They would both undoubtedly be among the favourites to win it. Players could get used to winning championship games, experiencing the pressure of semi finals and finals etc. Or would they be better served up at senior, taking a few hammerings but learning about the pace, physicality needed at that level?

I'm not advocating one approach over the other - just interested to hear peoples thoughts."
You make good points. Regarding Four Masters, you'd think that surely they would be better off in the intermediate championship. They're a division 3 team now and their regional league results this year, which included losses to Naomh Ultán and Naomh Bríd are a serious cause for concern. On the other hand, being in division 3 might be the kick they need to sort out whatever problems exist within the club that are holding them back. Killybegs dropped to division 3 a few years back, completely restructured their senior team, and went straight back up through the divisions without leaving the senior championship.

This doesn't take away from the fact that these teams who take a massive dip in form should have no more right to play senior championship than division one teams like Cloughaneely, or top division 2 sides like Naomh Columba. A spell in senior championship might be the motivation those teams need to find that extra gear, especially since it's been so long since those teams played senior championship.

DL_Man (Donegal) - Posts: 89 - 01/10/2020 13:20:00    2295052

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