Caught between a rock and a hard place
Dual star Megan Thynne remains stuck between a rock and a hard place with the LGFA confirming that the Ladies NFL Div 2 semi-final between Meath and Cavan will be played at Breffni Park on Saturday at 1pm, an hour before the camogie side are due to throw-in against Antrim in the National Camogie League Div 2 semi-final in Inniskeen, Monaghan.
The lack of co-operation between the Camogie Association and the LGFA to facilitate Thynne's participation in both games is astonishing and while Cavan also have players involved in football and camogie on Saturday (the Cavan camogie side will face Mayo in the Div 4 semi-final in Sligo at 4pm) there has been no compromised reached.
Thynne has avoided having to pick sides so far this year because all the NCL Div 2 games have been played on Saturdays, while the footballers have been playing on Sundays.
Meath Ladies football manager Eamonn Murray admits that Thynne has only been used sparingly for the footballers in their first three games against Kerry, Wexford and Clare to avoid burn out, and insists that she would have started all the football games if the Dunsany star hadn't been involved with camogie 24 hours earlier.
"The simple truth of the matter is that Megan is an exceptional footballer and would be a regular starter for our side. However, we are conscious that she is also playing camogie and we have tried to ease her work load," said Murray.
"Megan is an unbelievable player and an even better person. She would play 24 hours a day for club and county if she could, but we want to make sure that she is still playing in five or 10 years time, so that is why we have put her best interests ahead of those of the team in recent weeks.
"Tipperary also have the same issue this weekend with their camogie and football teams playing in big games, but the football is on Saturday and the camogie is on Sunday. We know it is not an ideal situation, but at least there is some compromise there. We just want the best for Megan and also want to give Meath football the best chance of securing a place in Div 1, those chances are certainly helped by having Megan in the team," concluded Murray.
Speaking on LMFM Meath camogie manager Brendan Skehan insists that he won't be putting any pressure on Thynne to make a decision and he has pointed the finger of blame for this situation at firmly at the LGFA and the Camogie Association for not reaching a comprmise.
"I'm really disappointed with how things have turned out. I'm not sure what is going on at the top levels, but there seems to be an unwillingness to work together to create an environment for the dual player and it is very unfair on Megan," Skehan told LMFM.
"She was at training last night. She is feeling it, she doesn't know what to do. She wants to be taken out of the equation and not be forced into having to make these decisions. I can understand that."
"She is not the only player in this situation. I think Cavan have seven inter-county players who are involved in football and camogie this weekend, that is there decision.
"I'm not going to push Megan hard to play, I wouldn't do that to the player. It is very unfortunate, she ants to be there with the footballers and she wants to be with the camogie, it is really, really unfortunate that she has been put in this situation.
"At this stage I can't tell you whether we will have her or not for the weekend, but I'm certainly not going to put her in a position to choose, that's for sure.
"All I can do is make representations to the Camogie Association through the correct channels and the feedback is that there has been a lot of organisation up front on this from the Camogie Association to make sure that they have the venues and the referees laid down for Saturday.
"What I have been told is that it would require moving two games, getting different grounds for two games. What I've been told is that there is a full round of fixtures for Sunday and that everything has been set up to play these games on the Saturday, that is the day they've always been playing.
"I thing the Camogie Association feedback is that they were taken by surprise that the football was moved to the Saturday, there wasn't really much contact between the two organisations on that movement.
"I don't want to say any more. I don't know what is going on at that level, it's not my place. All I know is that it's the player, again, that's left to pick up the pieces on this one unfortunately, it is the player again who just wants to be there for her teams," concluded the camogie manager.