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Gemma O'Connor - People didn't...

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Gemma O'Connor - People didn't appreciate Fennelly 'boredom' comments

Stephen Doyle
Stephen Doyle

06:26 6 Jun 2019


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Eleven-time Camogie All-Star Gemma O'Connor has told Off The Ball that her colleagues in the Irish Defence Forces "didn't really appreciate" Colin Fennelly's comments regarding his own time in the army.

Last January, in an interview with Nathan Murphy on OTB, the Kilkenny forward complained of having nothing to do during his time serving in Lebanon.

"The lads aren't allowed speak out about it and that's one of the biggest problems," Fennelly said. "It's just boredom, absolute boredom.

"From this [interview], the top lads will come down and say 'We have to do this and that'. There's actually nothing to do. There's a whole revamp that needs to be done."

O'Connor, a nine-time All-Ireland winner with Cork, felt that Fennelly's comments did not represent the true feelings of all members in the Defence Forces.

"I can't really speak for him," O'Connor said at the launch of the 2019 Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship on Thursday.

"I suppose it didn't come across too well and a lot of people in the defence forces didn't really appreciate it. Especially, I suppose, when everybody at the moment is trying to [improve] pay and conditions."

"He probably just found himself in an awkward situation and probably said the wrong thing."

Gemma O'Connor aiming for three-in-a-row

The 34-year-old has committed to another year with the Rebelettes who are aiming to win their first All-Ireland three-in-a-row since the 1970s.

She believes that her job with the Irish military has helped her maintain the necessary levels of fitness and conditioning to continue playing at the elite level.

"The defence forces have definitely helped me out training-wise and have supported me the whole way through so I couldn't really fault them for that kind of support.

"I've been in a role [training recruits in a training institution] where I was constantly active, constantly on my feet.

"I was on physical courses and that definitely has helped me on the pitch. In the last year, I've changed roles where I'm more nine-to-five and a bit more flexible, not as physical.

"Hopefully that'll stand to me too because a bit more rest goes [a long way]!"

Cork get their title defence underway in Group 2 of the Championship with a trip away to face Clare on Saturday, June 15 - time and venue are yet to be confirmed.

Meanwhile, Liberty Insurance has announced that they will further bolster their long-standing support of camogie by live-streaming a key match on their Facebook Page during each week of the group stages of the All-Ireland Senior Championship.

Also, the Liberty Insurance Camogie All-Stars Tour will take place this November with New York announced as the destination.

The Tour will see two teams comprising of the winning Senior All-Stars from both the 2018 and the upcoming 2019 campaign face each other in an exhibition match in the Big Apple.

Subscribe to Off The Ball's YouTube channel for more videos, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for the latest sporting news and content.


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