GAA boss Páraic Duffy defends the right of the TV companies to choose what games they want to cover
‘We have 40 live games and are quite happy to work within that,’ says director general
Paraic Duffy: “We showed three live games over the weekend on national TV, you can’t show them all, I think that was fair.”
GAA director general Páraic Duffy said yesterday the association does not feel the need to examine what championship games are televised by their broadcast partners.
“We have 40 live games and are quite happy to work within that,” said Duffy at yesterday’s Fighting Blindness charity launch in Croke Park.
“We were quite happy for RTÉ to stream it but I don’t think you can say, ‘we picked the wrong game so let’s make it 41 or 42’. It’s 40 games, we picked that figure because it suits the needs of counties for their own fixtures, club games and so on, and the fact it was available to people on RTÉ.ie met that demand.”
TV3 show nine of the 40 live games broadcast each year, and chose the Munster hurling championship as their live provincial semi-finals when the option was presented to them last December. They will be showing the Kilkenny versus Tipperary hurling qualifier this Saturday.
RTÉ has the Munster football and Leinster hurling finals from Croke Park.
“The television companies choose the games,” Duffy continued. “They had 40 games to select. They could have shown the first [Dublin v Kilkenny] game. That was by choice.
“The second day RTÉ had already indicated they were showing a game at seven o’clock and I think to be fair the compromise of streaming it was suitable for everybody.
“We showed three live games over the weekend on national TV, you can’t show them all, I think that was fair.”
Duffy also believed that the Connacht Council took the right option by not switching their upcoming provincial football final between Mayo and London to the English capital. However, plans are underway for a €4.9 million redevelopment of Ruislip, the London GAA headquarters.
“There is a very limited capacity there at the moment and I think the Connacht Council made a very sensible decision in the space of time they had. Ruislip would not be a provincial venue so it would have been very difficult to play it there.
“The total cost of the project would be £4.2 million. We haven’t worked out who is going to invest. It’s coincidental that London have been so successful this year. Ruislip needs an upgrade.”