Thursday 22 March 2018

O'Connor fury over Gavin ban

Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

KERRY manager Jack O'Connor has lashed the GAA's disciplinary process, alleging that it has seriously wronged Paul Galvin, who is currently serving an eight-week ban after being sent off against Cork last month.

Galvin was dismissed after a clash with Cork defender Eoin Cadogan in an NFL game and had the stipulated four-week ban for a straight red card doubled because of a similar offence last year.

However, O'Connor insists that Galvin should never have been sent off and is absolutely disgusted by what he regards as the appalling treatment of last year's Footballer of the Year.

"I saw the incident live and watched it again several times on video and it's clear that Paul is 100pc innocent. We're extremely frustrated because the video shows that he wasn't guilty of striking," said O'Connor.

Galvin attended a Central Hearings Committee meeting accompanied by O'Connor and county secretary Peter Twiss in Croke Park last week, but it took several days before Kerry were told the eight-week ban would remain in place.

O'Connor is also annoyed over claims that Cadogan needed dental treatment arising from his clash with Galvin.

"Eoin Cadogan was treated for a mouth injury three or four minutes before the incident with Paul. That's a fact -- Paul had nothing whatsoever to do it. Paul is gone for eight weeks and, as far as we're concerned, that's the end of it, but in the interests of fairness this kind of thing can't be allowed to happen again.

"If you have a situation where a player has his back to an opponent and is wrestled to the ground and is then sent off, what are we at?

"What happens if someone jumps up on Gooch's back some time in the future? Will the Gooch (Colm Cooper) be sent off -- even if he does nothing?

"Referees are under pressure to apply zero tolerance and while I have no problem with that, respect between players and referees has to operate both ways.

"As far as I'm concerned, what has happened to Paul Galvin is totally wrong," O'Connor told Matt Cooper on Today FM.

He also stated that, despite rumours claiming Galvin was considering quitting over this latest suspension, he expected him to return to the Kerry squad once his ban had expired.

Irish Independent

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