Saturday 23 September 2017

Changing only one football rule is 'ridiculous' - Tompkins

 

Former Cork All-Ireland-winning captain Larry Tompkins. Photo: Piaras Ó Mídheach/SPORTSFILE
Former Cork All-Ireland-winning captain Larry Tompkins. Photo: Piaras Ó Mídheach/SPORTSFILE
Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

Former Cork All-Ireland-winning captain Larry Tompkins has described as "ridiculous" the proposed change in football where kick-outs must cross the 20-metre line.

It's the only suggested rules amendment on the agenda for Special Congress on September 30, leaving Tompkins stunned.

"At the very least, I thought making it compulsory for kick-outs to cross the 45-metre line would be discussed. That would lead to contests for the ball which the public want.

"Having to kick the ball past the 20-metre line only is ridiculous. A kicking tee was brought in some years ago to help goalkeepers drive the ball further but instead we got short kicks going sideways.

"Now, they want to change it so that the ball has to go forward by just seven metres," he said.

He would also favour getting rid of the black card, abolishing back-passes to the goalkeeper and banning kicks out of the hand for scoreable frees.

"Football is losing out as a spectacle. The physicality is gone out of it. Hurling is a lot more physical and referees let it flow.

"Many of the tackles in the Galway-Waterford game last Sunday would have been blown up as fouls in football.

"People will always go to the big football games but interest elsewhere is dropping. I see it here in my pub in Cork during the league. There's no comparison between the interest in hurling and football games - and I'm not just talking about Cork people.

"Hurling is great to watch but football has lost a lot of its appeal, yet all that's happening is tinkering with the kick-out rule," said Tompkins.

Irish Independent

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