GPA to campaign for introduction of video technology
THERE is an unprecedented demand for the use of video technology among inter-county players and their representative body intend to seriously ramp up the pressure now to have it introduced.
In response to GAA president Christy Cooney's latest comments that it would not be introduced in the near future, the Gaelic Players Association (GPA) ran a quick text poll with their members yesterday and described the response as "huge and virtually unanimous."
GPA spokesman Sean Potts added: "The players want video technology to be introduced as quickly as possible. It is very rare to have that sort of immediate response and unanimity among our members and it underlined just how strongly they feel about this issue.
"With such a strong mandate it is our responsibility to put this firmly on the agenda and we will be campaigning heavily for it on their behalf.
"The level of commitment from players at the top level now is such that they simply can't countenance mistakes in decisive decisions in major games being caused by human error any more -- not if there is a way to avoid it."
GAA officials met with the makers of the 'Hawkeye' technology last week to see if their equipment would help them avoid the sort of controversies that marred this summer's Leinster football final and All-Ireland semi-final between Down and Kildare.
However, GAA president Christy Cooney has reiterated that a motion to this year's Congress from Tipperary to introduce video technology to aid match officials was rejected by the Central Competitions Control Committee.
"As it stands, the policy of the association is that we are not introducing any technology within our games," Cooney said.
The GAA's female counterparts are much more pioneering. The women's football association were the first to introduce 'yellow cards' and operate a countdown match-clock.
And, tomorrow, all the players involved in the Gala All-Ireland senior and intermediate camogie finals will have their names on their jerseys to "help improve player recognition and further promote the game's star players."
Meanwhile, Galway officials last night revealed that the small amount of just 240 tickets had been sold in the county for today's All-Ireland U-21 hurling final against Tipperary at Semple Stadium, Thurles.
Galway hurling board chairman Joe Byrne said supporters were not travelling in protest over the game going ahead, despite an appeal from the Tribesmen to move it to a neutral venue.
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