Having demonstrated conclusively that they are not great exponents of the game of hurling, the Clare hurlers next turned to attempting a player coup. Initially this didn’t go too well for them either.
Forgetting to sign their letter of complaint, with reference to the management skills of Mike McNamara, didn’t do much to aid their overthrow attempt.
Bizarrely they felt that an unsigned letter still merited being sent by registered post. When taught in primary school the fundamentals of writing a letter, they would have been assured that the letter would need a name at the end of it so that whoever received it would know who it was from. Perhaps none of them were listening that day.
Taking a few days to ponder the scale of this oversight, they said they would have another go at it. This time Clare’s finest hurlers met in the Temple Gate Hotel and, displaying an improvement upon their letter-writing technique, this time remembered to sign it before directing it towards Sixmilebridge and the county secretary, Pat Fitzgerald.
Placing their overworked quill back on the mantelpiece, all they can do now is sit and wait. Their writing days are numbered. Yet they will probably be unable to stop quietly querying how their letter is getting on and whether it is getting them anywhere.
Will it make it back up to Ennis from Sixmilebridge and onto the floor of next Tuesday’s county board meeting?
If it does, who will read it on their behalf and what will the seasoned county board delegates make of their literary endeavours?
Will the delegates react to its contents with wild applause, accompanied by an outbreak of manic foot stomping and jubilant yelps?
Or will they verbally shred every word contained in the letter that seeks to pour scorn on the decision-making capabilities of the county board and the delegates who clubs keep sending to their meetings.
Twelve months ago the board and the delegates linked arms and added an additional year to Mike McNamara’s term in charge of the senior hurling team.
Just over a week ago they couldn’t think of anything to say when the manager arrived into the meeting, addressed it and waited for somebody to say something.
All he got was a few back slaps. Nobody thought to ask the manager why his players were writing, albeit unsigned, letters about him or how come Clare had not won a single game of consequence in 2009.
Of course Mike McNamara has promised the delegates and the county board that he will visit them again next Tuesday night. This time, though, things have changed. The second letter, now signed, will permeate deep into Clare hurling before it is read out. If, of course, it is read out.
How disappointing it would be for the 27 writers if their work is not read aloud. The injustice might again take them back to their school days when a particularly thrilling essay they may have penned, was usurped by an even more incident packed one.
They might be similarly glum if their work does reach the ears of the straining assembly but is then critically scrutinised, leading the delegates to comment disagreeably on the letter writing technique of the county’s premier hurlers.
Yet of course if the letter manages to carry through on what it was penned to achieve, it will result in the ending of Mike McNamara’s time in charge of the Clare hurling team.
If he steps down next Tuesday night he can chose a number of possible exit strategies. McNamara can opt to reveal some of short comings, members of the letter writing club might have kept from their scribblings or he could simply decide to say it best when he says nothing at all, just head east and home.
Or could Mike McNamara opt to post a letter of his own to Ennis in time for Tuesday evening?
This would allow the delegates to decide, X Factor style, whose work pleased them best.
The winner would be allowed another spin on the Clare hurling carousel, which goes into overdrive once the playing season subsides. The loser could write about the hell of it all.