Sunday 11 December 2016

Maggie Farrelly makes history to become first woman to referee a senior inter-county game

Published 06/01/2016 | 20:28

Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior mens inter-county game. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior mens inter-county game. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE

Cavan's Maggie Farrelly made GAA history tonight by becoming the first female official to referee a senior men's inter-county game.

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The meeting of Fermanagh and St Mary’s in the Bank of Ireland Dr McKenna Cup tonight in Garvaghey might usually only attract the interest of those within the Erne county and the teaching college.

Farrelly broke new ground this evening.

Last year, she became the first female to take charge of an inter-county game when she was in the middle for the Ulster minor Championship tie at Brewster Park, between Fermanagh and Antrim.

Despite only taking up refereeing in 2008, she joined the Ulster GAA Referee Academy in 2011.

Her first final came the following year, when she refereed the Cavan All-County League decider.

In 2014, she refereed the county U-21 final, the All-Ireland Ladies' senior final, and was named Ulster GAA Referee of the Year.

This year brought a big breakthrough with her handling of the Ulster minor game.

6 January 2015; Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior mens inter-county gamewaiting to leave the changing rooms. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
6 January 2015; Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior mens inter-county gamewaiting to leave the changing rooms. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
6 January 2015; Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior mens inter-county game giving final instructios to her team of officials. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
6 January 2016; Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior men’s inter-county game. with the Captains, Eoin Donnelly, Fermanagh, left, and Matthew Fitzpatrick, St Mary's at the toss. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE
6 January 2016; Maggie Farrelly making history as she becomes the first female referee to officiate a senior men’s inter-county game. with the Captains, Eoin Donnelly, Fermanagh, left, and Matthew Fitzpatrick, St Mary's at the toss. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group B, Round 1, Fermanagh v St Mary's University College, Tyrone Centre of Excellence, Garvaghey, Co. Tyrone. Picture credit: Oliver McVeigh / SPORTSFILE

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