'How can we go from being congraulated on reaching the semi-finals to then finding out we are eliminated three days before the match is scheduled to take place?'
How can @3rdLevelCamogie go from congratulating us on reaching the semi finals to telling us on Wednesday, 3 days before the match that we are knocked out. All we want is a fair hearing. @ElectricIreland @HerSportDotIE https://t.co/VBTSYdTZuq
— Siobhan Mc Grath (@grath_siobhan) February 10, 2023
A tweet from Galway All-Ireland winner and current University of Limerick player Siobhan McGrath after her team's elimantion from the Electric Ireland Ashbourne Cup.
UL went into their final group game against Maynooth under the assumption that a winning margin of 33 points would see them progress through to the semi-finals based on points difference. This was seemingly confirmed by all parties ahead of the match. They ended up winning the game by 34 points which initially was confirmed by the official relevant social media accounts that they were through. A few days later, UL received correspondence that DCU would infact be going following a retrpospective change to a scoreline back in November.
UL Senior Camogie Statement 1/5 pic.twitter.com/SuwiEm5Qql
— ULAshbournePanel (@ULCamogie2023) February 10, 2023
The stament from UL reads:
On Wednesday morning, 72 hours out from the Ashbourne Cup semi finals our UL senior camogie team were absolutely shocked and appalled to receive an email from the THDC of the Camogie Association, stating our elimination from the Ashbourne Cup. This came just days after being congratulated by the CCAO (the college's camogie board) on earning our place in the semi finals.
On January 31st, with 1 final game in our group to be played, away to University of Maynooth, we knew a victory for UL would draw us level on points with TUD and DCU in our group. According to competition rules score difference would now be used to decide which 2 teams would qualify.
A table widely shared on the CCAO's social media channels (twitter and Instagram), in the lead up to this all important game, showed that we needed to win the match by 33 points to qualify in 2nd place. UL still went about seeking official clarification from the CCAO prior to the Maynooth match that indeed a 33 point winning margin was needed. This was confirmed by the CCAO executive.
Remarkably, we won the match by 34 points. The UL girls were immediately congratulated by the CCAO on twitter and received an email the following morning again congratulating us on our place in the semi finals.
Sometime over the next 48 hours the CCAO contacted UL to say that there may have been a mistake with the 'Official information' that had been provided. As far as we are aware a question was raised by DCU about the score difference, importantly not before but after our match with Maynooth, although they had been made officially aware of the scores and possible outcomes in the week leading up to the UL and Maynooth fixture. CCAO have confirmed to us that no official appeal was sent in. Despite receiving no official appeal, the CCAO kicked the matter up to the THDC (National Camogie Association).
At no point were UL asked for a submission by either the CCAO or the THDC explaining our situation. In fact we were kept in the dark and had to ask what was happening before we were told that the matter had been moved up to the THDC. We have no idea what information the THDC used to come to their decision as this was not shared with us.
However, at 9.19am Wednesday morning (Feb 9th) UL received a one line email from the THDC informing us that DCU will be going forward based on confirmation of a scoreline by a referee from a match dated November 29th 2022. Within 24 hours UL submitted an appeal to what we saw as this unjust and unfair outcome but last night at 11.30pm we received notice that we failed to establish even a hearing, still depriving us of any opportunity to plead our case to those that decided to eliminate us.
Tomorrow, the Electric Ireland Ashbourne Cup semi finals are due to take place and at the moment it appears that they will be happening without UL, making a farcical situation out of the whole competition.
The decision to retrospectively alter the scoring difference standings after the group had been completed has to be a precedent unheard of in any sport let alone Ireland's elite flagship third level camogie competition. As a result 28 girls who have given unbelievable dedication and commitment to their campaign will miss out on the chance to play in a national semi-final without any explanation as to why and no opportunity to plead their case.
We feel that this has been a totally unfair procedure throughout where natural justice has not been served towards the UL Ashbourne Panel. All we ask is for a fair opportunity to be allowed to plead our case.
UL Ashbourne Camogie Panel and Management 2022/2023
So frustrating it has come to this. Can’t but feel sorry for our final year students who will have this as their final memory of college camogie as it stands. Let these girls be heard. https://t.co/guwB90jSrD
— Clare Hehir (@clare_hehir) February 10, 2023
This seems very unfair 🤷🏼♀️ women's sport in the media for the wrong reasons yet again.
Human error occurred, and @3rdLevelCamogie solution is to throw a team unfairly out of the competition 🤦♀️surely this can't happen? @ul_gaa https://t.co/a3LxXGbFXz
— Cáit Devane (@caitdevane) February 10, 2023