John Martin

John Martin: Twin trouble

DOUBLE TROUBLE...The GAA have tried programmes in the past, but they haven't made much of a difference

DOUBLE TROUBLE…The GAA have tried programmes in the past, but they haven’t made much of a difference

GAELIC Life hurling columnist John Martin believes that the policy of establishing twinning programmes between Ulster sides and counties down south will continue to fail.

Writing after suggestions of a relationship between Antrim and Tipperary after the Premier county’s successful visit last weekend, Martin said that there needed to be beneficial for both sides in order to succeed.

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“For all that, sharing expertise is never a bad thing, but so far the twinning system hasn’t just cracked it. For a twinning programme to have any long-term benefit, it has to offer something to both parties. No matter how well meaning the ‘donor’ county or how positive the agreement between the pairing, like any relationship that’s all one-way, it’s destined for failure. Goodwill only lasts so long,” he said.

“If I was looking for something from the goodwill generated by last week’s visit by Tipp’, I’d not be looking the Premier county to ‘send up some of their stronger players now and again’, but for 10 or 12 clubs to commit to coming up one every couple of years with a decent underage team, play a couple of games against county development squads and, maybe take a coaching session.”

The full column is in today’s Gaelic Life, in shops now or available online here.

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