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'Gardaí must act to stop online GAA abuse'

COLM O'Rourke has called on Gardaí to investigate online threats to GAA players as highlighted last weekend by his nephew, Meath goalkeeper Paddy O'Rourke.

A tweet directed at O'Rourke after Meath's defeat to Westmeath on Sunday read, 'Don't think I won't knife you brother/'

"The abuse on Twitter of some players, including my nephew Patrick in particular, is just disgraceful," RTÉ pundit and former Meath captain, Colm O'Rourke said.

"I think it's time at this stage when the law of the land must apply in these cases when people are saying things an incitement to violence or an incitement to hatred.

"The Gardaí need to intervene in these sort of things - people are getting away with far too much with this online abuse."

Conor Cusack - a GPA offical and mental health activist - called on O'Rourke to report the abuse directly to authorities.

"What I would say is if someone threatens your life on social media, that's something that should be reported to the gardaí, absolutely," said Cusack.

"I don't see any difference between that comment being made on the street and by a guy on a keyboard.

"That's something that's crossed way over the line.

"I would be recommending any guy, in any sphere of life, who receives something like that to talk to the gardaí."

Tyrone captain Seán Cavanagh, meanwhile, revealed his unwillingness to open a Twitter account for fear of the abuse he would potentially receive.

"One of the reasons I don't go on is that I don't want to give people the opportunity to abuse me," he admitted.