McCrabbe wants league altered

by Michelle Fortune , 27 March 2012

Alan McCrabbe has urged the GAA to revert to last year's system after branding the new Allianz Hurling League structure a disaster.

In 2011 teams in Division 1 were guaranteed at least seven matches but the decision to split the top level into two groups of six teams means counties will play just five regulation rounds in 2012.

The new format was widely criticised before its introduction with many fearing it would create an even bigger divide between the stronger and weaker counties.

Inter-county managers have hit out at the system, claiming it is preventing them from experimenting with the set-ups, and Dublin hurler McCrabbe believes the new format has been a disaster.

"It's a disaster this year. If we had beaten Tipp at the weekend and won out next game we could have been out of the relegation zone," McCrabbe reasoned.

"I dont think it's fair to teams or managers because they can't try out young players that are coming through. It's hard on panels as well because if you pick up a few injuries you could be back into the relegation battle. I think they need to look at it and change it next year.

"You were guaranteed seven games and you did get to try out lads. This format doesn’t seem to suit any team."

With Dublin facing a relegation battle against either Galway are Waterford, McCrabbe 's complaints could be seen as sour grapes but the 25-year-old accepts Anthony Daly's men only have themselves to blame for their predicament.

"We're not giving out that we are in the relegation zone. That's our own fault. But you do need to be trying out players. Other panels are saying the same thing," he pleaded in The Sun.

"Hopefully it can be changed next year and we can get back to playing seven or eight games in the league.

"It's a disaster going down to the last match when it means nothing for us. We are waiting for a play-off.

"They really need to look at it. They really need to change it for next year."

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