ALLEY CHAT with Antóin Ó Braoin
Shock at failure to set up Juvenile Committee
A week after they voted unanimously to adopt the much heralded new plan for juvenile handball in the county, the clubs of Wexford have sensationally failed to provide a single nomination for the positions of either Chairman or Secretary of the new juvenile sub-committee contained within that same plan. This contradictory position has shocked the Management Committee of Wexford Handball Board and highlighted once again the serious shortage of volunteers willing to contribute at administrative level.
The 100% turnout of clubs at the recent GAA Handball County Convention had been matched by the 100% support for ‘The Next Level’ as this new plan for underage handball was enthusiastically embraced by all connected with the game. The plan not only involved a complete restructuring of the way in which the championship programme for boys and girls was promoted, it also featured three levels of competition for at each age group from U10 to U17 inclusive. In short, it had something for everyone. Additionally there were plans to introduce development squads for the first time ever and backed by enhanced coaching of the county team it appeared destined to, as the name suggested, take the young players of Wexford to the next level. All it needed was the proposed new committee to implement it but at last Monday’s night’s special meeting at Piercestown, called to launch the new committee, those same clubs were conspicuous by their absence.
Less than half of the Children’s Officers from the clubs who had backed the plan at Convention and who were to make up the delegates for the new committee, attended the meeting and not one was prepared to allow their name to go forward for the positions of either Chairman or Secretary. The meeting had been chaired by County Chairman Tom Rossiter and also present were Acting County Secretary, Tony Breen as well as County Children’s Officer, Virginia Hanrahan.
Tony Breen says the plan will survive because it is the right plan at the right time for the young players of Wexford “we simply cannot allow this setback to derail the process and we will try again in January to find the personnel to form this committee”. In the meantime the responsibility for implementation reverts to the County Committee.
It was the second time in a matter of weeks for the clubs of the county to fail to provide candidates for positions at County Committee level. The recent County Convention saw no nominations for either Secretary or Treasurer and this latest setback points to a lack of appreciation by clubs as to their obligations in this regard.
The matter will be revisited at the next scheduled County Committee meeting of January 6th.
Glen Fuels Awards
Voting is now open for the 2nd Annual Glen Fuels Handballer of the Year Award and supporters of Gavin Buggy, Holly Hynes, Todd Hynes, Tommy Hynes and Galen Riordan will no doubt be logging on to www.glenfuels.com in the coming days and weeks to show their support. To assist people who are interested in voting but who are not familiar with the game of handball, a brief résumé of their achievements will appear in next week’s papers. Last year’s winner was Darren O’Toole, Coolgreany.
Upcoming events and dates
County Juvenile Championship League stages 3rd-19th January
Quarter finals and semi-finals 24th-26th January
Any remaining semi-finals 31st January-2nd February
B quarter finals and semi-finals 31st January-2nd February
A Finals 5th-7th February
B Finals and Plate Competition 12th-14th February
Leinster Juvenile Championship (Round 1) 25-26th January
Leinster Adult Championship (Round 1) 2nd January
County Adult Championship (Round 1) 3rd January
Wexford will host Leinster Handball Convention on Sunday, January 19th when representatives from around the province will congregate at The Maldron Hotel, Wexford for the 2pm start. Before that counties will compete for the Convention and Delegate Cups. Further details will be announced later by GAA Handball Wexford.