Thursday 24 May 2018

10 witnesses give evidence on 'sickening' GAA assault

Conor Hayes in Hospital in Drogheda
Conor Hayes in Hospital in Drogheda

Ryan Nugent and Martin Grant

Up to 10 people who saw a melee in which a teenager had his leg broken during a GAA match have given evidence at a hearing into the incident.

Conor Cribbin-Hayes's leg was broken in two places in an alleged assault during an under-17 GAA match in Meath on September 17.

It is understood the Competitions Control Committee (CCC) for the Meath County Board has met with both clubs that played in the game.

Representatives from Gael Colmcille attended a meeting with the CCC last Wednesday, while a separate hearing was held with Conor's club, Clann na nGael.

At the most recent hearing on Thursday, up to 10 witnesses - including coaches, parents and onlookers - gave their accounts of the whole incident. The referee's report on the incident was also read out.

The Herald understands that in the coming week sanctions may be applied a result of the incident.

It is understood a brawl broke out towards the end of a match between Clann na nGael and Kells club Gael Colmcille, in the Gaeltacht area of Rathcairn.


Paramedics stretchered the teenager (17, left) from the GAA grounds to a nearby home. An ambulance arrived on the scene shortly after 6.30pm and he was taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda.

His father William, who contacted gardai after the incident, described the situation as "vicious and sickening".

A spokesman for the Meath County Board last night would not comment further on the case until the CCC investigation was concluded.

Talented rugby and GAA star Cribben-Hayes had hoped to win a sports scholarship in college next year.

Gardai last night confirmed "a number of witnesses" had come forward and said their investigations were continuing.

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