Ronan Steede has become the latest intercounty GAA player to make the switch down under on a nine month contract with Melbourne club Grove Dale. Ronan, who is a Corofin native will be huge loss this season to his club and of course, to his county.
Steede would be underage for intercounty u21 football this season and he would have been a fine addition. Even last season he was a dominant force for club and county and was a key member in Corofins u21 success in 2010. However, he had the potential to make it to senior county football and its just a shame that he has been lost in the short-term, as he could have been part of Tomas O’Flathartha’s plans. He has a course deferred in I.T Sligo just in case it doesn’t work out for him ”bellow”.
However, as he said himself it is a once in a lifetime oppertuinity and you cannot fault him on that, I am sure everyone is wishing him all the best, myself included. But I find it a great shame that we lose our own GAA developed players to AFL professional football in Austraila. What needs to be done though?, a move into the professional game?, everything the GAA doesn’t want to be.. It’s a tough matter but these players have been coached and developed by the GAA and it is only the powers that be in the GAA, that are at fault for letting players go.
Steede isn’t the first player to leave for Aussie Rules and he certainly wont be the last. I wish them all the luck in the world to anyone that does take the big step to Down Under, but it’s just a shame that our potential star players are being lost.
All the best.