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GAA needs a new model for small clubs

A NEW model is required to keep small rural clubs alive, according to GAA coaching officer, Peter Casey. The Lisdoonvarna native, who is living in Fanore for the past 15 years, argues the GAA’s one-size-fits-all approach isn’t suitable for some clubs, particularly those on the periphery in the west, north and east of the county. The former Clare U-21 hurling selector proposes one model for an urban club with enough playing resources and another for those struggling due to a lack of numbers. In the first group, he includes the likes of Éire Óg, Sixmilebridge, Doora-Barefield, Ballyea and Clarecastle, who usually can field two teams in most underage grades most years. He places Cratloe, Tulla, Broadford, Ennistymon and Corofin in a middle group that can comfortably field teams in most grades. Clubs on the Loop Head Peninsula, such as Naomh Eoin and O’Curry’s, and teams in isolated parts of North and East Clare, however, require amalgamations at underage level. Stressing …

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