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'Can't send them to a Hunger Games isolation camp!' | Jamie Wall on GAA

Shane Hannon
Shane Hannon

09:39 13 May 2020

Mary Immaculate hurling boss Jamie Wall has spoken about the Club Players' Association stance on the current absence of GAA, with no return of gaelic games expected before October.

A survey of club players across the country this week revealed the reticence of many to return while it is not fully safe to do so.

The sizeable survey of 3008 club players revealed that:

  • 57 percent of respondents would return to training or action in 2020, 22 percent would not and 21 percent are unsure
  • 27 percent are living with a person over 70 years of age or a vulnerable individual
  • 64 percent would train or play if there was temperature checking in place

Jamie was appearing on our new Mount Rushmore analysis show 'Aftersun', which aired on our Instagram, and will be available on our YouTube channel.

He said it is crucial the GAA isn't compared to professional sports when it comes to return dates.

"Those stats are there now, it's something I was very interested to hear. I agree we should leave it to the experts, but something that shouldn't be forgotten is this is very much a voluntary organisation.

"Playing is voluntary and we don't know who has to go home to their mother or father who might be a vulnerable person, a grandparent who might be living with the family.

"Personally I think 22 per cent who said categorically they are not prepared to return is a huge number, that's three out of every starting 15.

"That's a massive amount, and that's just the club players. Over 27 per cent of club players said they live with a person who is over 70 or might be considered a vulnerable person.

"[GAA President] John Horan spoke very well the other night when he said GAA players have to go to work. I'm not saying I have the answers, but we have to take a little bit longer to figure it out.

29 February 2020; Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael John Horan speaking during the GAA Annual Congress 2020 at Croke Park in Dublin. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

"The Bundesliga is returning, and in our house we're so deprived of sport we've set up a sweepstake! I'm going to be a Leipzig fan, the brother is going to support Dortmund, we've Wolfsburg and all that.

"And at the end of the day that's going to be great, we can't wait to see it. But I don't know Timo Werner, I don't know Thomas Muller, I don't care about these guys on a personal level.

"I don't know what their home situation is, and I'm quite happy to let them dance for my entertainment or amusement. It's a very, very different thing us talking like that about inter-county or club players [getting] back to play behind-closed-doors for our entertainment.

We have to remember these are guys who work in the community... we can't send them off to an isolation camp like The Hunger Games. These are things we can't do at our level.

"We have to be very careful about comparing the GAA to any other sport because it is so, so different."

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CPA Club Players Association Jamie Wall Michael Quinlivan Off The Ball Tommy Rooney

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