I have a different opinion on our Development Squads. (1) What happened the 3 year sponsorship deal that was announced in 2012? (2) I've reffed some of their games and I don't see improvements. (3) I've seen coaches reffing their training games not implementing the rules - bad example to players. (4) I see no strength and conditioning with these players v other Dev Squads. WW are too small & light.
I think because you have 2 sons playing you're looking through rose (or Blue/Gold) tinted glasses!
Why not have a chat with the very capable coaches from your own club that have become involved with the county development squads. I can also point to the excellent coaching that is being driven by Paul Garrigan. At a club level there are excellent coaches in our club which has resulted in a string of minor hurling championships and appearances in the latter stages of football championships and latterly our defeat in the senior hurling final. We like many other clubs are on an upward trajectory as regards to our standards. Our county likewise is showing signs of improvements in juvenile Hurling and Football. Our schools are showing signs of improvements. There is a concerted effort by many people to improve what we do in this county. We can also look to the root and branch reviews of everything that is being done in Hurling Football and Juvenile games coupled with the people who took the time to see what they can do to help the situation. While there are times that we would all like to see our development and standards transfer into more instant results we will have to be more patient. We are a county with a relatively small gaelic games playing population and we will have to realise that just as we are making improvements through the development of our players that every other county is working to do the same.
I have no criticism of the effort that's being put into Development Squads and will always respect the volunteers who give up their free time to commit to such work.
The points I'm making is that it's not producing the finished product. Is the Strategy correct? Is the plan correct? What results are being acheieved? What happened the sponsorship deal that was launched with a "Big Hooray with Bells & Whistles?" If these results were replicated in Business, the Heads of those Business would lose their jobs!!!
I believe you are being very unfair to the people that are working very very hard with the development squads. Most of the people that are involved now are fairly new to the scene and there are huge improvements in the standards of play, fitness and skill as a result. Yes more can be done and i believe that the reviews that I mentioned will produce further improvements. The new center of excellence will provide the facilities and the proposed appointments of coaching staff who are qualified to coach and advise the young players on strength and conditioning will further enhance the learning experience of the players. In relation to your questions about the strategy and plan working I would say that yes the strategy is working. Standards, Strength and fitness is improving. There is rarely any circumstance in life that change will be instant. The work that is being put into the players by the county coaches is first rate and would compare with many other counties. The continuos improvement of our players will also benefit from the increased quality of coaching being done at club level. We will have to have some patience with the players as they continue with their journey and we must be realistic. We have a very small gaelic games playing population in Wicklow. The clubs in the East Coast of the county which are in the largest populations areas still only field one team at each age group. In some areas Soccer and Rugby is the game of choice.
In relation to "What happened the sponsorship deal that was launched with a Big Hooray with Bells & Whistles?" I was told by the county coaching officer that the sponsors withdrew after 1 year following a national corporate strategy change. Other than that I have no idea perhaps you have more information that you can share with us all.
Sirlarry, The Northern Counties have only a pool of half the population to recruit from. But they can achieve success. I cannot understand how we announce a 3 year sponsorship deal and only have it for 1 year.
Sirlarry, I respect your opinion but I still disagree with you based upon what I have seen in terms of coaching, performance and of course results, as a county, we are at the bottom of the table in all age groups. Maybe this change that you are talking about has happened recently and results and performance will improve accordingly, if so, I will be only too happy but if the changes continue producing what I have seen over the last 12-24 months then we are obviously still on the wrong road. Equally, I am in a position where I can compare what I see in our own county with two other counties through family ties and they are on a different plain in terms of preparation across the board to us, we are light years behind not only in terms of preparation but in terms of structure and administration ... this is not something that gives me any pleasure in seeing and it is one of the reason that I know we have a long way to go and obviously we are struggling to get a sponsor on the back of these results and performances - no company/organisation wants to be associated with what we are putting on display at all levels on the field. Finally, I know that there are people who are giving their time to games in Wicklow and I commend them but are they doing the job correctly and are they willing to change if what they are doing is not working - that is my main question.