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Sunday 20 August 2017

Two men get life ban for GAA attack that left ref out cold

Brawl left referee, official unconscious

Referee Simon Brady is knocked unconscious after a spectator punches him at a ladies football match
Referee Simon Brady is knocked unconscious after a spectator punches him at a ladies football match

Edel O'Connell and Francis Mooney

TWO men have received life bans from ladies Gaelic football following a violent brawl which left a referee and a senior official unconscious.

Referee Simon Brady and Tyrone county board chairman Martin Conway were both knocked unconscious at the end of the county's senior championship final last month.

The game between St Macartan's and Carrickmore was played on June 24 in Beragh, Co Tyrone.

Mr Brady was knocked unconscious after a man ran on to the pitch following the final whistle and punched him while his back was turned.

Following the assault Mr Conway stepped in to help.

But Mr Conway was surrounded by at least seven men and, during the melee, was headbutted by one of the group.

The impact broke his nose and left him unconscious.

One of the pair handed a lifetime ban yesterday by the Tyrone Ladies Gaelic Football Association (GFA) was part of the Carrickmore management team.

However, a statement from the Tyrone Ladies GFA did not name either individual or give details of the fine imposed.

The individual, confirmed as a member of the Ladies GFA, was identified as the person who allegedly assaulted Mr Conway.

He was handed a lifetime ban from any involvement in ladies football, including attendance at future ladies fixtures.

Carrickmore club was also handed a substantial fine.

Another man was identified as the person who allegedly assaulted Mr Brady.

The county board also issued him with a lifetime ban.

He was not a member of the Ladies GFA.

"It has been a difficult time for the ladies game in Tyrone, but the focus now is on pulling together ahead of Sunday's Ulster senior ladies football final with Tyrone up against Monaghan at Clones," Tyrone Ladies GFA said in a statement.

A number of violent assaults have marred fixtures in both the male and female codes in recent months.

On the same weekend as the Tyrone incident an umpire was attacked in a Tipperary divisional hurling game. He was knocked to the ground during a melee among players and had to receive medical attention.

Last month GAA player Mark McGovern (22), from Fermanagh, was left in a serious condition in a San Francisco hospital after suffering a head injury during a football game while playing for Ulster GAA club.

Irish Independent

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