I decided to examine how much money was involved. The Annual Accounts of the Irish Sports Council reveal the figures. The amounts are reproduced in the table opposite. In the period between 2007 and 2012 the Irish Sports Council spent over €2m on research. This represents a fairly health budget for research. I'm guessing those with responsibility for this budget want to keep control of it.
There was a large fall in the amount spent in 2010. While there has been some recovery in 2011 and 2012, the annual totals are less than the amounts spent in 2008 and 2009. In both of these years the Irish Sports Council spent over half a million euro annually on research.
The Irish Sports Council funded research can be accessed here.