Aside from the logistics of how it would be administered, do you think that players should be paid?
I would estimate that inter county athletes sacrifice at least 20 hours per week for their sport. This time is taken up by matches, trainings, gym sessions, physio appointments, travelling, rehabilitation, sourcing and preparing the right food & supplements, preparing equipment, mentally preparing.
Such a large amount of used time impacts other factors in their lives -
less time with their partners & children,
disruption with their jobs from having to work through lunch & leave early, being tired from a heavy session the day before & lack of concentration all of which leads to slower career progession
disjointed study time for students
mental stress from not performing well
criticism from less informed and ignorant supporters
falling out of most other social circles (this is important because players can be cast aside when their career is over)
difficulty maintaining friendships with non-gaa friends
no time to enjoy other things - music, relaxing, travel, weekends, nights out, nights in, quality food & drink,
managers instilling a tunnel-vision which leads to under-developed social skills
There is no doubt that being an inter county player carries a lot of benefits and perks. Some guys would say that they had the best times and experienced the most euphoric feelings of their lives playing gaa. However when their career is over it can be hard to recreate these highs.
I feel that the amount of sacrifices they make greatly outweighs the benefits receive.
Surely this is worth some form of retainer, no matter how small?