QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND:“If we look back at the appointment of Pat Gilroy and Whelan as management, it’s like Bobby Robson and Steve Staunton – because, like, Pat never managed before. They were putting an old man beside him to show him the ropes. It doesn’t work. It lacks confidence in the dressingroom. – Mayo’s David Brady
Louth can point to precedent in case for a rematch
AFTER Joe “Thierry Henry” Sheridan’s controversial handling of the ball at the end of yesterday’s Leinster final, we wracked our brains for some of the other controversial and bizarre endings to GAA matches.
While it was one of the strangest endings ever to a GAA match, you wouldn’t know it to read the official match report on www.gaa.ie.
Presumably the report was sent to North Korea to be cleaned up, as details of the match only paid passing reference to the match- winning incident in which Sheridan “smuggled the ball over the line”. In fairness to the Meath forward, he had a goal disallowed in controversial circumstances during the clash with Offaly at the end of May in Portlaoise. But that wasn’t a match-turning incident, it wasn’t in the dying seconds, it wasn’t in a final and it wasn’t a decision that went against a side that hadn’t won anything in many decades.
There is a precedent for awarding a replay.
The most obvious one occurred in the Leinster senior football championship.
In 1995, Laois defeated Carlow by one point in the quarter-final. However, Mick Turley’s score was ajudged by everyone – apart from one referee and two umpires – to have gone wide. The ’winners’ offered a replay and the Leinster council agreed. Laois won the refixture by three points. Ominously for Louth, a Meath delegate to that meeting spoke against the awarding of a replay, saying the referee’s decision should be accepted.
However, September Road’s favourite memory of a last-second match-winning incident that resulted in a replay occurred in the 1989 Connacht minor football decider.
Shane Curran scored a goal from a penalty in the final minute and players, officials and supporters went wild, celebrating the two-point victory for Roscommon. After the presentation of the cup, the young players even enjoyed a lap of honour. Meanwhile, the ref had left the field in a rush, surrounded by angry Galway players and mentors. Later, it was revealed he had disallowed the penalty for an infringement, and a Connacht spokesman announced: “The match has been awarded to Galway.”
Understandably, it was replayed instead, and Roscommon were definitely the winners this time.STAT ATTACK ATTENDANCES Munster SHC Final v Leinster SFC Final
Understandably, we suppose, with Dublin’s absence from the Leinster football final for the first time since 2004, the attendance yesterday was far less than has been usual. It’s worth noting the 2004 final between Westmeath and Laois finished level, and only 38,300 turned up for the replay, which, of course, Westmeath famously won. Far more worryingly for the GAA will be the drop in attendance at yesterday’s Munster hurling final in Thurles. Though the Munster council will be rubbing its hands in anticipation of another sizeable crowd turning up against for next weekend’s replay.
** During the weekend's senior club semi-final between Austin Stacks and Kerins O'Rahillys, Kerry giants Kieran Donaghy and Michael Quirke traded heavy blows. Neither player was sent off.
** Congratulations to Wexford, Galway, Cork and Kilkenny who have qualified for next month’s All-Ireland camogie semi-finals. Tipp’s defeat to Wexford ended the Premier County’s hopes of making the semi-finals.