"I'd play it in the back garden if I could. We've been training for this since last September" 1 year ago

"I'd play it in the back garden if I could. We've been training for this since last September"

Ciara Storey doesn't want mountains moved, all she wants is a chance to play that Leinster semi-final her and her club-mates have qualified for.

The Oulart-the-Ballagh player has won All-Irelands with Wexford and she's won them with her club too, but she's been playing this game long enough now to know that they don't come around every year. That an opportunity like this one mightn't ever come along again.


So that's why, having won the Wexford county title back in September, Storey and her club-mates didn't put the feet up but put the heads down. It was four years since they'd played in a Leinster championship and the bounce back set their minds to greater things, it was the light that got them through the lock-down.

"We've been training since our final last September. Three days a week, zoom, individual training," says Storey, who won back to back All-Irelands with her county in 2010 and 2011.

Along came a spanner, less than a fortnight ago, as the camogie association unveiled two potential fixture schedules for the year ahead. Under one of these options, the 2020 All-Ireland club camogie championships - at junior, intermediate and senior level - had a green light but with the other, they were all gone with the wind. The association initially gave the option that included the club competitions a go-ahead until, after a blow-back from the inter-county population, a split-season was introduced.

"We heard only 11 days ago that there was a chance it wasn't going to go ahead. That was the first we seen or heard of it, when we came across it online."


Now the most frustrating thing for Storey and for all of the clubs involved - in Munster, Leinster Ulster and Connacht - isn't that county players are getting first preference here, it's more-so that this shouldn't be a club vs county issue at all. It should be ran the way it has been run in years gone by, with club camogie championships taking place alongside the National Camogie Leagues.

"We've been involved a good few years and during those years, there was a good number of us playing for Wexford. We would have always just went back to Wexford after we were knocked out and that was the way. The same amount of weeks are there with both options, so I just don't understand why we can't play these games under the second option. The solution is right there in front of us."


"If we had been told in January, you'd be like 'right okay.' If like the men, we'd been told that there would be no provincial or All-Irelands after the county, that'd be okay. But we've trained up until this week the reason being that this big game, this big opportunity was in front of us."

"The camogie association are obviously under pressure, with Covid, with trying to get everything played and it is a tough job but there is clearly a solution there."

Management teams involved have put proposals forward which would see the competitions played off in as little as a three week spell, and Storey is hoping against hope that the powers-that-be will see where these club players are coming from.

"I'd play it in the back garden if I could. If we have to get dressed in the car and go out and play, I think everybody would be happy to do it. If it started on June 7, it could be done in three weeks by the end of June, by the time the League is finishing up.


"It's just a sickener for players. We hadn't won a county title since 2016 and came back then and won it this year. You know, this could be the last time we ever get to play in a provincial or an All-Ireland championship. People are getting older, women are having children and they're trying to plan their lives. We've planned our lives for the last six months around having this competition ahead of us.

"Club is where it all begins and where it all ends. You're up there when you're five or six until you're about 40, when you shouldn't still be playing! Winning All-Irelands with your friends and with the girls you grew up with, that means everything to you. The more camogie that can be played the better for everybody. I just really hope they will see where we're coming from."