Camogie All-Stars push for rule changes
Camogie All-Stars Aisling Maher, Gemma O'Connor and Grace Walsh have all called for rule changes to allow the sport to flow more.
Last year's All-Ireland final between Cork and Kilkenny was plagued by a high amount of frees and Congress responded to demand for change in April by waiving the previously-required three-year cycle to allow the introduction of trial rules.
Presently, there is no unintentional physical contact permitted in Camogie, however, many of the game's great players want to see that rule relaxed to adapt to the changing nature of the sport.
“Things are slow, but I think they’re finally starting to move,” said Cork captain Gemma O’Connor at the launch of the Liberty Insurance Championships..
“They’re setting up the rules review group which hopefully will start sooner rather than later. Liberty Insurance, with the All-Star trip and the streaming of games is moving it in the right direction. We just hope that it’s moving a bit quicker and it continues to move in that direction.
"More than likely I won’t be there to play with (any new) rules but it’s for the future players, to make the game that bit better. And we have the product to make it an unbelievable sport. What we want is a bit more flow to the game.”
Kilkenny defender Grace Walsh also wanted the rules to be loosened up a bit and would like the sport to be played the way it is during training at times.
“I would just like the rules to be tweaked a little bit… Let girls show the skill-base they have, show the quality, show the pace (Camogie) can be played at, the way it’s played at training," added Walsh.
“I think that will bring the game forward and get more people to come to the games because they want to watch it, because they think it’s going to be an exciting game.”
Meanwhile Aisling Maher, who was apart of a WGPA group along with O'Connor that took a look at some of the issues facing the sport, says she wants the tackle to be redefined.
“I think there’s a common perception that everyone wants shouldering in, and I don’t think necessarily that’s the case” Maher said. “I would like to see a slight change in the definition in the tackle. I feel like at the moment it’s a little ambiguous.
“It’s very difficult for referees to implement, and it’s very difficult as a player to know how a referee is going to implement it game-to-game. It’s very difficult to spend all this time on strength and conditioning, and then tackle a player and not give away a free, because any kind of physical contact seems to be falling on the wrong side more often than not.”