Duffy: GAA will never go extra terrestrial
THE GAA have told the Government that there's no need to insist in law that all their big games remain available on free-to-air TV channels.
Eamonn Ryan, Minister for Communications, has appointed independent consultants Indecon International to study the impact of designating sports events of major public interest to terrestrial channels. They are due to report in October.
The GAA have already made a submission to Government, pointing out that they have no intention of selling coverage rights of their big games to subscription channels which have limited viewing figures.
"Why would we do something that would hit our own members and our own games? There's no need to involve us in any list of events that are protected by law," said director general Paraic Duffy.
However, it's likely that the GAA will cut back next year on the number of championship games shown 'live' by RTE and TV3. There were complaints this summer that there was too much TV exposure which, as well as encouraging people to remain at home rather than attend games, also caused problems for county boards, which found that club programmes were clashing with 'live' coverage.
- Maurice Deegan (Laois) and Pat McEnaney (Monaghan) have been appointed to referee the All-Ireland football semi-finals as the GAA maintain their policy of not automatically opting for officials from provinces not involved.
Deegan will referee the Dublin v Cork semi-final on Sunday week, while McEnaney will take charge of Down v Kildare a week later.
That would appear to rule both out of contention for the final, as recent history has shown that neither of the semi-final refs are appointed for the biggest game on the football calendar.