Thursday 30 March 2017

Wicklow chief vows to tackle discipline woe

Colm Keys

Colm Keys

Wicklow chairman Mick O'Hagan has admitted it was not a good weekend for GAA in the county after one game was abandoned and 10 players were shown red cards in a number of senior football matches.

The focus of ill discipline was thrust upon the Garden County once more on the back of the championship quarter-final abandonment between champions Rathnew and Blessington.

Referee Kieran Kenny was forced to call it off after Blessington refused to play on after one of their players sustained a serious neck injury in a tackle.

That player was taken to hospital by ambulance and Blessington were adamant that the referee should have decided to abandon the game at that point of his own accord.

The second half alone was approaching its 100th minute between all the stoppages when Blessington refused to continue.

That incident had been preceded by a number of ugly scenes that brought matters beyond boiling point.

O'Hagan said there would be expediency in how this particular case is dealt with once the referee's report is furnished.

"I expect we will have a much clearer picture in a couple of days and we should have dealt with it by the end of this week," he said.

"Obviously it's not good when so many players are sent off over one weekend but we'll take it on a case-by-case basis."

The initial brawl lasted up to eight minutes before calm was restored and two players were dismissed.

As they were making their way off the field, however, more flashpoints developed. When it got under way again, Blessington fell a further three points behind and, following the final stoppage, they made it clear that they would not be returning.

Blessington may have to forfeit the game but Wicklow CCC are expected to meet on it tomorrow night.

Irish Independent

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