Monday 22 January 2018

Clare calling for major restriction on football handpassing

Former All-Ireland referee, Paddy Collins
Former All-Ireland referee, Paddy Collins
Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

Clare are leading an attempt to seriously restrict handpassing in Gaelic football.

They will seek support for a proposal that allows only two consecutive handpasses before the ball must be kicked.

No limit currently applies to handpassing, leading to criticisms that the game is becoming increasingly like basketball, while also losing kicking skills. Clare's motion will come before Congress in the Slieve Russell Hotel, Ballyconnell on February 28.

And while it's highly unlikely that such a fundamental change will come anywhere close to being accepted without experiment, it will be interesting to gauge the mood among counties.

Westmeath will also enter the handpassing fray, proposing that there must be "no propulsion of the ball by the non-striking hand during the execution of the pass."

It comes from St Loman's, home club of former All-Ireland referee, Paddy Collins (below), who contends that many handpasses are, in fact, illegal throws. Kildare want goalkeepers to be compelled to kick, rather than handpass, the ball when receiving possession from a colleague.

An infringement would result in a 45-metre free to the opposition.

A total of 65 motions, including the well-publicised recommendations from the Hurling 2020 Committee, will go before Congress.

Apart from the 2020 motions, some of the more interesting ones are as follows:

Extra-time to be played in all championship games (including All-Ireland finals) in all grades. (Tipperary)

The introduction of the 'black card' sanction in hurling (Maastricht, Europe)

That referees be allowed to consult with linesmen on the validity of a score. (Westmeath)

U-21 games to be extended to 35-minute halves in line with senior standards. (Tipperary)

Reduce from four to three the number of steps allowed in hurling before the ball must be played. (Tipperary)

No player under the age of 18 be allowed to play at senior or U-21 county inter-county level. No player aged under 17 be allowed to play at senior club level. No player under 16 be allowed to play club U-21. (Central Council/ Minor Review Committee)

The All-Ireland minor football quarter-finals be scrapped, allowing the four provincial winners through to the semi-finals. (Central Council/ Minor Review Committee)

Yellow cards, issued in normal time, shall not carry over into extra-time. (Down)

That when a clash of colours occurs, a toss takes place to decide who will wear their own colours: both sides have to change under current rule (Tipperary)

The size and mass of the sliotar be increased. (Clare)

Irish Independent

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