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GAA President Points The Finger At Broadcasters Over Coverage Of Weaker Counties

GAA President Points The Finger At Broadcasters Over Coverage Of Weaker Counties
Aonghus Ó Maicín
By Aonghus Ó Maicín
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GAA President John Horan seems to have taken a pop at RTÉ after he claimed the broadcaster was "driven by nothing other than numbers."

The comments came yesterday at the launch of the Joe McDonagh, Christy Ring, Nicky Rackard and Lory Meagher hurling championships.

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The GAA have come in from plenty of criticism recently for the lack of coverage concerning weaker counties - and when questioned at yesterday's media event, Horan pointed the finger in the direction of broadcasters, particularly the national broadcaster.


He said:

You'll see yourselves from the games that the TV companies have picked this year for the championship that it's predominantly hurling matches for the first four or five weeks of the actual championship. They are driven by nothing other than numbers on the actual television screen

Dublin played a Leinster [football] championship match which was a foregone conclusion in the last two years, and when I spoke to the head of RTÉ, he said: 'John, we are driven by figures. We'll get over 300,000 watching that game.'

But certainly in the next deal, we'll be looking for greater coverage...and the only way we are going to get it is to tie it into a contract and not give them the flexibility of choice.

Strangely enough, Horan also claimed football should follow hurling's example by introducing tiered championships. And yet, he failed to consider the inadequate promotion the secondary hurling competitions have received.

While those competitions begin this Saturday, they have faded into the background as primary competitions such as the Leinster and Munster championships demand most of the primary focus.


Our football counterparts could learn an awful lot from hurling about the benefit of tiered championships.

Carlow are a shining example to us in terms of the merit of these competitions and the progress which they've made. It's that progression opportunity that these competitions present, and I feel that's a great concept.

This was an issue Sligo forward Niall Murphy addressed on the Three Man Weave, the Balls.ie GAA podcast, last month.


There's probably a lot of counties out there hoping for a B championship - I'm struggling to agree with the idea as of yet.

I've seen a Tweet either today or yesterday about the Joe McDonagh Cup and they were giving out that there had been no dates set for the fixtures.

The fixtures have been set for six or seven months but they have no date or time yet, which is a bit mad, a bit mental like. But that's the respect given towards those lesser competitions and I wouldn't want to be involved.

Looking in on the debate, it would appear the current Sligo player has a much better grasp of the failings of the status quo than the men at the top of the association's hierarchy.

SEE ALSO: Second Tier Championship Destined To Fail Without Promotion It Needs



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