Wexford chairman Diarmuid Devereux has revealed how four young players in the county have had double hip replacements.
The revelation comes after the Model County sacked their minor hurling manager Eddie Walsh for breaching the training ban rule for county minor teams. Under GAA rules, county minor teams aren’t allowed to resume collective training until March 1.
Devereux said a stand had to be taken to protect young players from burnout.
“I know of four cases of players in their early twenties in Wexford who have had double hip-replacements. Players of that age should not be having serious problems with their hips,” he said in the Irish Independent.
“I remember listening to Dr Pat O’Neill on the issue of burnout and the unreasonable demands placed on young players and it stuck me to the floor. As an Association, we have to face up to our responsibilities to our players, especially the younger ones who are playing in more than one grade.”
The chairman noted how members of the Wexford minor panel were already training with their college teams, with an agreement having been reached for them to train exclusively with their schools.
“If you train, say three times a week with your college and twice with the county, it leaves very little time for anything else,” he added.
“As county chairman, what am I supposed to say to parents when they complain that it’s a ridiculous workload to place on lads who are preparing for their Leaving Cert? We’ve taken action to deal with it because it’s the right thing to do. It’s not just right in Wexford but in every other county too.
“Rules are there for a reason and they’re for the good of the players.”
There you have it…take note all juvenile mentors!