Dublin footballer Diarmuid Connolly is unlikely to start Saturday's All-Ireland semi-final replay against Mayo at Croke Park despite having his one match suspension lifted by the Disputes Resolution Authority.
Connolly was set to be unavailable for today's fixture following the red card he received for hitting Mayo's Lee Keegan in last weekend's tied game at Croke Park and the subsequent one game ban handed down by the GAA's Central Hearings Committe.
However in a dramatic u-turn the GAA's independent arbitration tribunal, the DRA, have quashed Connolly's suspension, handing a massive boon to Jim Gavin ahead of the highly anticipated replay.
Dublin are not expected to announce their line up for Croke Park until before the game and while Connolly may not start it is likely he will feature at some point against Mayo.
The GAA have released a statement explaining their decision to overturn Connolly’s ban in the early hours of Saturday morning.
The DRA have suggested Connolly received a lack of fair procedure at the early stage of the disciplinary process, which ultimately hindered the All Star forward’s defence.
The GAA statement read: "At a hearing on 4 September at the Regency Hotel Airport in Dublin, a DRA Panel chaired by former Supreme Court judge Hugh O'Flaherty (with solicitors David Nohilly and Brian Rennick) upheld a claim by Diarmuid Connolly against a one match ban arising out of an infraction during the drawn Mayo v Dublin All-Ireland semi final of Sunday, August 30th.
“The Panel’s decision related to lack of fair procedure afforded to Mr. Connolly at an early stage in the GAA’s internal disciplinary process which unfairly hindered the preparations for, and presentation of, his defence. Mr Connolly was thus free to play in the replay of the above match on September 5th.
“This statement is for informational purposes only. A full, written award reflective of the hearing as a whole, will be issued by the above DRA Panel within two weeks and will be published on sportsdra.ie.”