Páirc Uí Chaoimh steward resigning over rugby fundraiser

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Páirc Uí Chaoimh steward John Arnold is resigning over Munster rugby playing the Springboks at the home of Cork GAA. As the Evening Echo report from the Cork county board that was held this week, where Arnold handed in his resignation and said the following in doing so;

“I’m stepping down as a steward because of the fact that there’s a rugby match, a fundraiser for the IRFU, being played in Páirc Uí Chaoimh,” he says.

“I wasn’t overly happy when the Liam Miller match was played a few years ago but that was very different – in fairness, you had a widow and small children and it was a fundraiser and I contributed to it myself.

“They’re saying Cork GAA could benefit to the tune of €250,000 – but if that’s the case, the IRFU or Munster Branch would be gaining a lot more. People will be giving out next year, asking why we don’t put more coaches in the schools and it’s because we have to pay off the debt on the stadium – the IRFU can do that and it’s we’re funding them by effectively organising a fundraiser for them.

“I’m not a bigot – I don’t hate soccer, rugby, racing, cycling, boxing, swimming, judo. I don’t go to those but I love hurling and football and I’m a member of the GAA.

“It’s not our duty to promote anything else. Why we should be bending over backwards and facilitating them when what we’re doing is creating more income for them, I don’t know.

“I’m a conservative but some people think that that’s bad anything old-fashioned has to be got rid of. We say the GAA is democratic but this was given to us as a fait accompli – maybe I’m in a minority of one but at least let it be discussed.

“If someone came from Cincinnati, Luxembourg, Germany or Australia and asked you, ‘Is it true the Cork hurling team weren’t able to play in Páirc Uí Chaoimh and had to go to Thurles but a rugby team from South Africa could play there?’ you’d be a while explaining that to them.”

“The ethos when Rule 42 was abolished was, ‘God help us, they’ve no stadium, Lansdowne Road is being knocked down and you couldn’t ask them to go over to England, you have to help a neighbour when he’s homeless,’” he says.

“The ink wasn’t dry on that when they went away from the idea of it being a temporary measure.

“The alcohol issue is a complete joke – I wouldn’t like to be a steward next year telling someone they couldn’t bring alcohol in when they’d say they had it at their seats for the rugby match.”


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