Cavan board may be asked to assist referee abuse investigation

The Cavan county board may be requested to assist in the investigation into the abuse of match referee Derek O'Mahoney after Saturday's All-Ireland under-21 football semi-final defeat to Dublin.

For now the matter is with the GAA's Central Competitions Control Committee (CCCC) , although it is expected a more formal investigation will be carried out in order to decide what, if any, sanctions will be handed down.

A number of Cavan officials, players and supporters approached O'Mahoney at the end of the one-point defeat, venting their anger at a couple of late decisions that appeared to decide the game in Dublin's favour: the Tipperary referee was escorted off the field by gardaí at the Portlaoise venue, shaken by the experience.

Cavan under-21 manager Peter Reilly also declared his dissatisfaction at those late decisions, including the fact Dublin's Conor McHugh was not black-carded for an apparently deliberate foul (McHugh later scored an equalising point for Dublin), and also the fact Dublin's winning point came from a free awarded when the referee had first played the advantage rule in Dublin's favour, only for that advantage to be apparently surrendered when the attempted shot was sent wide.

Dublin were still awarded a free, and with that free secured the win.

In the meantime the former chairman of the Football Review Committee (FRC) Eugene McGee, who helped introduce both the black card and the advantage rule, has expressed his opinion the Dublin player should indeed have been black carded, as “deliberate this foul most certainly was”, while the advantage rule was also misapplied.

“As with all new rules it is not just players or mentors who have to get accustomed to them, but the referees also,” said McGee.

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