CHAIRMAN of the Brendan Keogh Youth League Micheal Connolly has said the failure of some member clubs to address lop-sided scorelines was killing enjoyment, killing participation and driving kids out of the game.
The straight-talking Connolly issued a warning to offending clubs on the league’s Facebook last week, saying, “I will not stand over a league which continues to allow child abuse to happen.
“Make no mistake, in this day and age, this is exactly what this is,”he said.
Connolly claimed that approximately once a week he had to pull clubs into line but insisted his patience was wearing thin on two fronts.
Firstly, he said, some clubs weren’t doing enough to ensure that score lines didn’t get out of control and, secondly he claimed, clubs were breaching the league’s fair play ethos by promoting high scores on social media.
Last week one team defeated another 17-3 and a subsequent match report was publicised in the local press!
“These scorelines are simply indefensible given all the avenues, suggestions and recourse that we have repeatedly given to clubs to correct such,” continued the chairman.
“How hard is it to sub off a star player at 5-0? How hard is it to go down a man, down two if it doesn’t ease? I’m sick listening to clowns telling me they did all this and then I hear its the weakest players they took off or took none off at all until the final 10.
“I am loathe to imposing fines on the small minority of clubs who continue to transgress, so here is a suggestion for the dinosaurs who think they are ‘achievers’ with their cricket scores.
“When a game goes to a five-goal disparity, take a ‘top’ player off, at six take two off, at seven take three off, at eight take four off.
“If it closes back down, slip the players back on accordingly. It has worked in America and Switzerland with great success.”
Connolly said the league had, through hard work of all concerned, had developed a postive image and reputation for fair play. He insisted the barometer of success was enjoyment for everyone and that development came before winning and enjoyment ahead of stress in ensuring participation instead of disillusionment.”
The league has meanwhile launched an investigation into the abandoned under-16 game between Strathroy Harps and Sion Swifts last week.
It is understood the referee called a halt following a mass bust-up. All parties involved have been called to a meeting of the governing body this evening.