Dublin may be on the road for All-Ireland quarter-finals
Congress voted overwhelmingly to change ‘Croke Park round’ to a ‘neutral venue’
Motion 19 is passedb at GAA Congress in Croke Park. Photo: Tom O’Hanlon/Inpho
Dublin may be required to go back on the road should they reach this year’s All-Ireland quarter-final round robin.
Up until now the county played both their home match and what has been designated as ‘the Croke Park round’ – the double bill meeting between provincial champions and also the qualifier teams, which has been played to date at the headquarters venue.
Congress on Saturday voted – with Dublin supporting – by 221-24 to re-designate the latter as a ‘neutral venue,’ clearing the way for the Central Competitions Control Committee to fix phase 1 matches accordingly.
For instance were Dublin again to win Leinster, their phase 1 match against the Munster champions – strongly fancied to be Kerry – could conceivably be fixed for Thurles where the counties played in the 2001 All-Ireland quarter-final and replay.
Dublin CEO John Costello responded briefly by saying: “We’re confident that CCCC will take all relevant factors into account when fixing venues.”
Paul Cunnane, Mayo’s PRO, welcomed the proposal as something that “would reduce costs to counties” as well benefit local economies in the neutral venues chosen.
Michael McGrath, chair of Donegal, who proposed last year’s motion that any county in the All-Ireland quarter-final round robin could not nominate Croke Park as a home venue, which was defeated nearly 2:1 by delegates, supported on Saturday saying that it brought “more fairness” to the quarter-finals.
It is though simply an enabling motion and the CCCC is not obliged to exclude Dublin from Croke Park, should they decide that it is the most appropriate venue. Kerry or whoever the Munster champions may be may prefer to face Dublin where they have played them in many high-profile matches during the last decade, including three All-Ireland finals and one replay as well as two semi-finals and two league finals.
Main motions and results from GAA Congress
1 (Pomeroy Plunketts, Tyrone): Authorising the sideline official to notify referee of any foul play. (Passed 70-30%)
2 (Limerick): Enabling team captains and managers to register two failed challenges to refereeing decisions about the validity of a score and other awards by reference to Hawk-Eye. (Withdrawn and referred to Central Council)
3 (Standing Committee on Playing Rules): Prohibiting the maor foirne from entering the field of play. (Failed to reach 60% - 59-41%)
5 (St Rynagh’s, Offaly): Allowing temporary replacement of a player who has suffered a head injury. (Withdrawn and referred to Central Council)
6 (Raheens, Kildare): Prohibiting a player who has received a kick-out from passing the ball back to his goalkeeper. (Passed 62-38%)
7 (SCPR): A player taking an attacking mark in either of the rectangles may be challenged immediately if he decides to play on – as opposed to being able to take four steps. (Passed 90-10%)
8 (SCPR): Enabling sideline officials to be appointed in all matches – at present they are mandatory in and confined to inter-county fixtures. (Passed 62-38%)
9: Revising the value of a pointed sideline cut to two points (Hollywood, Wicklow). (Rejected 23-77%)
11 (St Ita’s, Cork): To abolish extra-time and revert to replays for All-Ireland senior semi-finals if the teams are level at the end of 70 minutes. (Rejected 21-79%)
13 (SCPR): To introduce a black card into hurling with the same sin bin sanction as in football for cynical fouls, such as pulling down or tripping opponents. (Rejected 18-82%)
16 (NaomhÉanna, Wexford): Permitting teams through designatedrepresentatives to speak to the referee during and after a match about clarifying matters to do with officiating. (Rejected 46-54%)
19 (Central Council): Changing the designation of the Croke Park round in the All-Ireland football quarter-final round robins to that of a ‘neutral venue’ – enabling the CCCC to fix one of Dublin’s non-away fixtures for outside of Croke Park. (Passed 90-10%)
25 (Rules Advisory Committee): Giving Central Council authority in setting close seasons for collective training. Attn: Football Tier 2 (Motions 20-27 taken together and passed 96-4%)
30 (RAC): To extend to the Management Committee a disciplinary jurisdiction to intervene in any incidents that it deems might, ‘cause damage – reputational or otherwise’ to the association. (Passed 99-1%)
32 (International Workgroup): To establish a body called ‘World GAA,’ answerable to Central Council, which would supervise and promote the association in certain overseas regions. It would also revise downwards the size of overseas delegations. (Passed 92-8%)
33 (Fixtures Calendar Review Taskforce): Establishing a central committee with oversight of club fixtures in all counties and the power to intervene of the schedules are deemed ‘consistent with GAA rules and policies’. (Passed 93-7%)
36 (FCRT): Forbidding counties to call off club fixtures because of inter-county involvement except as specified in rule. Sanctions include forfeiture of grants and disqualification from the relevant inter-county championship. (Passed 82-18%)
39 (FCRT): Prohibiting any player who taken part in the national league from playing in the under-20 football championship. (Withdrawn pending further consultation)
40 and 41 (FCRT): Establishing in rule deadlines for Sigerson and Fitzgibbon Cup as well as secondary school competitions. (Withdrawn pending further consultation)
48 (Tourmakeady, Mayo): Broadening the definition of ‘relevant connection’ in the rules on eligibility for both club and county purposes to ‘either parent’ or ‘legal guardian’. (Withdrawn and referred to Rules Advisory Committee)
59 (Leinster Council): To expand the current Leinster championship round robin from five to six counties by suspending relegation for the 2020 season and taking up the McDonagh Cup winners. (Passed 95-5%)