Fermanagh revert to even age grades

By Niall Gartland

FERMANAGH have become the latest county in Ulster to revert for the traditional even number grades at underage level for 2024.

The matter was debated at a meeting of the County Committee on Monday night and it was decided to switch back to the u-12, u-14, u-16 and u-18 grades from next year onwards. Earlier in the year amid a national conversation on the topic, Tyrone and Armagh voted to dispense with the odd number grades and other counties, the latest example of which is Fermanagh, have followed suit.

Ahead of the recent Fermanagh County Convention, CCC Chairman Phil Flanagans said: “Another thorny subject that needs discussed is what we are going to do with underage age grades going forward.

“In our opinion, this is not a black and white issue. There are upsides and downsides to either approach and a decision based on facts needs to be made that meets the needs of our players, clubs and the wider association.”

“Finding a solution to this is not straightforward and no matter what decision is taken, there will be downsides to it. Given that playing an u-16, u-17 or u-18 competition in the early part of the year seems not to be a realistic proposal, a discussion needs to be had on whether playing an u-15 competition at this time of the year is an acceptable workaround.”

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