Tomas Ó Sé says it is right to question Sligo's decision to forfeit their Connacht football clash with Galway, but admitted he may have come across as abrupt in his viewpoint earlier this week.
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A raft of positive Covid-19 tests in the Sligo camp has led the Yeats county to withdraw from Saturday's scheduled Connacht SFC semi-final against the Tribesmen.
Sligo were rocked by seven positive tests on Monday, and the following day, the County Board decided to forfeit the game, stating players and management alike were "extremely upset" to have to take the decision.
"Very disappointing Sligo have pulled out of the championship. I'd love to know the exact situation that has led to this. Is it 11 players or more?", highlighting other counties had fulfilled fixtures under similar circumstances.
"Why is it all weaker counties that seem to be in bother with this, does it suit them?" he concluded.
The comments sparked an angry response in some quarters, with Leitrim GAA chairman Enda Stenson describing the comments as "unforgivable", suggesting Ó Sé should consider his future as a Sunday Game pundit.
Speaking on the RTÉ GAA podcast, Ó Sé elaborated on his viewpoint and began by accepting that his opinion could have been expressed more carefully.
"Looking back on it, the wording was possibly abrupt and it might have come across as if I wasn’t sensitive to the pain and hurt that is going around the country and the fact that this is bigger than sport.
"I didn’t mean it to sound like that, and maybe if I had more time, I would have thought about it.
"As a player I always showed respect to them [weaker counties]. Always. I have never as a pundit looked down on them or treat them differently, but I think it’s fair to question."
Tomás Ó Sé discusses the ire behind that tweet, and a lot more besides on this week RTE GAA Podcast with @me_stafford, @RoryONeill1990, @KieranShannon7, @BrenCummins1 & @tomas5ky pic.twitter.com/OMOONFrc9U— RTÉ GAA (@RTEgaa) November 5, 2020
Ó Sé stands by the decision to question the walkover, especially given Fermanagh fielded a team against Clare last month despite losing a large number of their panel due to positive tests and close contacts, with Roscommon doing something similar against Cavan in the league.
"The only reason I asked the questions was the fact that Fermanagh, under serious pressure, and Roscommon under serious pressure, fulfilled their fixtures.
"It has been thrown about that the weaker counties don’t have the resources, or indeed the same interest. It’s not me against weaker counties, but you have to ask questions."