Saturday 19 April 2014

GAA’s ‘Hawkeye’ stood down following error during All-Ireland minor semi-final

1 June 2013; A 'miss' is displayed on the big screen following a decision made as a result of the Hawk-Eye Innovations Ltd cameras being used for the first time at a game in Croke Park. Leinster GAA Football Senior Championship, Quarter-Final, Offaly v Kildare, Croke Park, Dublin. Picture credit: Diarmuid Greene / SPORTSFILE
A 'miss' is displayed on the big screen following a decision made as a result of the Hawk-Eye Innovations Ltd cameras

THE GAA has stood down ‘Hawkeye’ following an error during the All-Ireland minor hurling semi-final today at Croke Park.

The controversial error saw Hawkeye brand a perfectly good point as a ‘miss’ during the All-Ireland minor hurling semi-final between Limerick and Galway.

The goal-line technology was brought in by GAA chiefs this year – making its debut at the All-Ireland Club Finals on St Patrick’s Day in Croke Park.

Up until today, the system, which is sponsored by Specsavers, was in full use for the All-Ireland championships.

It’s thought to have cost the GAA somewhere in the region of €200,000, although the costs have never been confirmed.

However following today’s mistake, GAA chiefs stood down ‘Hawkeye’ and an investigation into how the error occurred is underway.

The incident occurred when Limerick's Barry Nash sent a ball sailing over the bar and the umpire immediately raced for his white flag.

The decision was reviewed and the point was ruled as a 'miss' by Hawkeye but the match officials overruled the technology and awarded the point.

However, the graphic clearly showed that the sliotar had gone inside the post.

"It's not good enough," Tomas Mulcahy said on RTE's Sunday Game.

The decision could have been hugely costly as the game finished as a draw in normal time with Galway going on to win by 0-23 to 0-20 after extra time.

The GAA announced, following the contentious decision, that Hawkeye would not be used in the senior game between Limerick and Clare.

A clamour of calls was made to introduce Hawkeye into GAA following a number of instances in the 2010 championship. It’s already used with much success in tennis and cricket.

In recent years, championship games have been mired in controversy over key scores where officials made the wrong call.

The Leinster football final between Louth and Meath was one such example, in which a controversial goal by Meath snatched victory away from Louth in the dying minutes of the game.

In 2010, a judge ruled in the High Court that Louth fan and pensioner could not bring a challenge over the controversial goal which was allowed to stand in the Leinster final.

Paddy Garvey (75), wanted the court to give him permission to bring judicial review proceedings over the awarding of Meath's winning goal in the Leinster SFC final at Croke Park, when it appeared that Meath's Joe Sheridan threw the ball over the line to deny Louth the Leinster championship.

However, Mr Justice Michael Peart refused his application saying, among other reasons, that he had not made out an arguable case.

By Cormac Byrne

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