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Pádraic Joyce slams GAA for challenge game ‘fiasco’ ahead of league opener

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“You talk about player welfare: It’s a buzz word.”

Pádraic Joyce has slammed the GAA for the challenge game “fiasco”, where the Association had initially stated that no games could be played before changing their mind the following day.

Joyce was speaking ahead of Galway’s return to action away to Kerry on Saturday and he was highly critical of the GAA in his comments.

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Joyce on the GAA.

The two-time All-Ireland winner condemned the GAA’s decision not to allow challenge games during the four-week period leading up to Galway’s opening league game.

“You were told you could go back and you’d get four weeks to prepare for the league, but you are not allowed play challenge games,” Joyce told the media as per Irish Times.

“And there was the fiasco last week where you can’t play challenge games, and they came out the next day and said you can play.

galway gaa

“As it transpired we had games organised but had to call them off, and you talk about player welfare.

“It’s a buzz word and I don’t know who is saying it up there in Croke Park, or do they actually look into it at all, because how do you expect lads to come back and be fully match-sharp in four weeks, it’s kind of funny really.

“Challenge games are part of getting a team ready for league and championship and the fact that you have only three league games this year is an area where I feel we were let down a bit.”

gaa challenge games

Joyce on Kerry v Galway.

The Galway manager is looking forward to travelling down to Kerry this weekend, knowing each league game takes on even more importance this year, given the split format (North and South) in each division.

“It is a great match to look forward to,” Joyce added.

“We are going to be travelling down there again because of the way we were drawn.

“It’s tight… four games, you need to be winning two to survive in Division 1 because you go into relegation, anything could happen.”

Kerry v Galway is live on Eir Sport this Saturday. For details of all GAA TV matches this weekend, click here.

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