Wednesday 26 October 2016

Joe Brolly's proposed rules for Gaelic Football to be put to the test

Published 26/06/2015 | 12:47

Joe Brolly and (inset, top) Aaron Kernan and (bottom) Shane Curran, both of whom will play on the exhibition game
Joe Brolly and (inset, top) Aaron Kernan and (bottom) Shane Curran, both of whom will play on the exhibition game
Joe Brolly

Joe Brolly's answer to "puke football" will be put to the test in an exhibition match on the eve of the Ulster final in July.

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Earlier this year, Brolly came up with a solution to beat the blanket defence in Gaelic Football when he outlined his blueprint for the future of the game in his Sunday Independent column.

Brolly wrote at the time: "I believe there is such a solution. One simple rule change, that applies only on the kick-out. The goalkeeper must kick the ball out beyond the 45-metre line. For the kick-out, only the four midfielders can be in the zone between the 45s.

"The rest of the players must line up as per the throw-in, with six-versus-six inside each 45. They do not have to be in their starting positions, so long as there are six from each team inside each 45. From the kick-out, the ball is not in play until it is touched by one of the midfielders. Until then, the rest must stay inside their 45. I do not advocate for any other playing rule change.

"There are around 35-55 kick-outs per game. That means that in future, a coach would have to develop his defensive and attacking strategies from the starting point of a midfielder in possession in the middle of the pitch on 35-55 occasions per game.

"The rule will provide space and time for long-kicking from the midfield area into the forwards, or for great attacking half-back lines to surge upfield without hitting a 13-man wall.

"It will also give the art of midfield high-catching its proper place, avoiding the artificial solution of a mark. Critically, forming a blanket defence will be impossible from the kick-outs."

Now, Monaghan club Truagh Gaels will gather a team of Ulster's best who will take on a rest of Ireland selection on July 18 to test the 'Brolly Rules'.

Ronan Clarke, Ryan McMenamin, Aaron Kernan and Seanie Johnston are all committed to playing while Derry's Adrian McGuckin and Down's James McCartan will manage the Ulster selection.

Seamus McEnaney will take charge of the rest of Ireland team and will be ably assisted by Kildare legend Glen Ryan with Padraig Joyce, Eamonn O'Hara, Mattie Forde and Shane Curran all lining out.

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