IN CONFIRMING his candidacy for the position of Vice Chairman of the Donegal County Board, Ed Byrne says that the good work on the club fixtures schedule cannot be lost.
Killybegs clubman Byrne, the current assistant secretary, has confirmed to Donegal Daily/Donegal Sport Hub his intention to run for the role of Vice Chairman. The role comes with the portfolio of Chair of the Competitions Controls Committee (CCC).
Byrne will go head-to-head with Cloughaneely’s Seamus Ó Domhnaill, who is currently serving as an Ulster Council delegate, on Monday-week, December 14, at the annual convention.
Byrne stepped into the assistant secretary’s role in early 2020 after the position – the holder of which acts as secretary of the CCC – wasn’t filled at last year’s convention.
“We have a good CCC at the moment,” Byrne said.
“The people on it are very good. One thing that I have learned about them is that they all have a genuine interest in getting the fixtures done and played.
“I think that I have built up a good relationship with the majority of clubs and they can see that I am prepared to work with the clubs.”
Frankie Doherty has to vacate the Vice Chairman’s seat as he has completed the five-year term and seems set to be returned as the Assistant Treasurer.
The 2020 Convention will be held remotely with club delegates tuning in via Zoom and the Executive meeting at the Donegal GAA Centre in Convoy. Votes for the various positions will be submitted in advance.
Byrne was instrumental in devising the format for the Donegal SFC. He served a previous term as assistant secretary and is a former PRO.
The scheduling of fixtures has improved considerably in recent years, although the 2020 Donegal SFC final between Naomh Conaill and Kilcar not being played also left the CCC frustrated.
Byrne said: “No other group was more upset that we didn’t get the county final played than the CCC. Bear in mind, the CCC worked night after night, day after day, going through regulations and formats and one thing we wanted was to have it played this year.
“That disappointment, which was severe, will be in our minds.
“That was a good sign that the CCC cared. Had it been a case that the CCC were of a view that ‘we did our best a didn’t get it played, but it’s grand’, I would be more worried.
“I think we had as near a perfect a format as we could get in the last couple of years with League being finished before Championship.
“We have listened to managers and players – and that has worked. That has to continue and the CCC has to represent the clubs. The CCC has to woe with the clubs.
“I believe that a small working group has to be formed and spent six or seven months working on preparing for the 2022 season.”
With the format of the 2021 season still up in the air, amid suggestions of a split season, Byrne believes that 2021 could be ‘experimental’, but doesn’t see much change from this Covid-effected campaign.
He said: “I don’t envisage 2021 being much different, I think it’s safe to say. Maybe we’ll have a split season and clubs can expect a directive to have less celebrations, but I can’t see there being much more activity.
“We attended a webinar recently and it was about the 2022 fixture plan. That will require a change at congress to do a split season and that is something that the task force is working on.
“In Donegal, I think 2021 is the perfect chance to have our own working group alongside the CCC.
“This is what the Vice Chair role should be about. I actually believe that the CCC Chair should be a separate role outside of the Executive. Fixtures can’t be lost in a battle for a position.”Tags: