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Thursday 14 December 2017

Galvin 'lucky' to escape injury in on-field attack

Sam Griffin

The Kerry county board are expected to launch an investigation after GAA legend Paul Galvin was attacked during a club game by an opposing irate club vice-chairman brandishing a hurl.

The incident occurred just as the second half of the drawn Kerry senior hurling championship final between Lixnaw and Kilmoyley at Austin Stack Park in Tralee was about to get under way.

Eye-witnesses revealed Galvin clashed with an opponent from Kilmoyley, prompting a melee, before the Kilmoyley vice-chairman Paddy O'Sullivan ran towards Galvin swinging wildly with a hurl.

Lixnaw management confirmed the three-time All-Star and former footballer of the year was struck during the altercation.

"By our accounts he was struck. I didn't see the incident but he was struck by all accounts," Lixnaw coach and three-time all-star Ciaran Carey told the Irish Independent.

Players and back-room staff from both sides then ran onto the field before Mr O'Sullivan was eventually removed by stewards and then gardai.

The pitch invader with the hurley, inset, Paul Galvin walking off the pitch at the end of the game
The pitch invader with the hurley, inset, Paul Galvin walking off the pitch at the end of the game
Kilmoyley vice-chairman Paddy O’Sullivan is removed from the pitch after attacking former Kerry star Paul Galvin.
Mr O’Sullivan on the pitch.

Photos revealed the invader cut his face during the melee.

One eye-witness said: "It was lucky he didn't get his head taken off. The guy was swinging wildly with the hurl."

In a statement last night, the Kerry county board said its Competitions Control Committee would consider whether or not to launch an investigation into the matter after reading referee John Sexton's report.

Kilmoyley club secretary John Nolan, who was at the game, said the club would comply with any investigation.

"An incident happened but I presume the referee will go with what is in his report and the county board will investigate it so we'll cooperate with that," he said. Asked about potential disciplinary procedures, Mr Nolan said: "The man was removed so we will just have to wait and see what the consequences are. I'm sure the county board will be onto us."

"Lixnaw manager Ciaran Carey said the club would not be taking the matter any further.

"Paul is more concerned about the match. The incident is over. To be fair to both teams, all we're interest in is that it was a draw and both teams get another crack at it."

"The incident wasn't even mentioned after the game," he said.

Irish Independent

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