Search icon

Women in Sport

22nd Sep 2020

“You will be exposed if you don’t look after your female athletes”


Think it, ask it.

That’s the message from 20×20 during this phase of the movement. Support for women’s sport is swelling more with every passing month and, now, it’s time for everyone to speak up.

If you think your team is treated differently to the men’s team, ask why.

If you think the coverage is worse, question it.

If you think more can be done, look for answers.

Discussions, solutions, even debate is where we’re at now. No longer should anyone feel fear about expressing their thoughts about the treatment of women’s sport. If you think, ask it.

What’s happened at the top is a shift. Clubs and media understand that properly supporting female sport should be a priority, no matter if they think there’s ‘much more earning power’ in the male equivalent, as Gavin Cummiskey put it.

On the 20×20 podcast, he laid down the reality.

“It is established in sporting organisations now that you will be exposed if you don’t look after your elite female athletes, or your female athletes who have potential to be elite female athletes.

“If you let them go by the wayside whilst you put your investment in male athletes who are equally talented.

“It comes back to recognition and respect. These are base levels things – if we get them established in Irish sport, remarkable things will happen.”

Where help was and is needed to keep propelling the female game, the push from its stars has sped it up.

Mary O’Connor spoke about how ‘transformational’ the Ireland women’s hockey team were in causing a culture shift on the island as they stormed to the World Cup final in London.

“They were really excellent at what they did but, also, they were really intelligent, articulate women,” O’Connor explained.

“They were able to tell their stories and they weren’t afraid of engaging with social media or giving interviews during the tournament.

“We all felt that we knew them by the time they got to the final.”

Listen to the podcast right here.