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Wexford club that led call for clock/hooter idea stunned by late U-turn

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GAA president Liam O'Neill said this week that it would be wrong to proceed with the clock/hooter because it wouldn't work. Photo: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE

GAA president Liam O'Neill said this week that it would be wrong to proceed with the clock/hooter because it wouldn't work. Photo: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE

SPORTSFILE

GAA president Liam O'Neill said this week that it would be wrong to proceed with the clock/hooter because it wouldn't work. Photo: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE

The Wexford club that proposed the introduction of the clock/hooter time-keeping mechanism in GAA games five years ago has expressed dismay at the decision to backtrack on a system that was due to come into operation from the start of this year's championship.

Ger Cashman, chairman of the Clonard club, said having been twice agreed by Congress, it was difficult to understand why the clock/hooter wasn't in place.

"Where's the point of clubs bringing forward motions if this is what happens? We cannot understand where the problem is," he said.

"If it (clock/hooter) works so well in ladies football, why not in the men's game? At the very least, it should have been brought in on a trial basis to see how it worked.

Clonard drove the clock/hooter idea in 2010, taking it successfully through Wexford Convention and on to Congress, where it was passed. However, it was not implemented after Central Council cited cost issues.

It was back on the Congress agenda two years ago when it was again passed. Trials were held in last year's third-level competitions, after which it was written into rule, with a view to coming into effect for this year's All-Ireland championships.

However, in a dramatic U-turn, Central Council decided last Saturday to bring forward a motion calling on next month's Congress to scrap the new rule, without ever implementing it.

GAA president Liam O'Neill said this week that it would be wrong to proceed with the clock/hooter because it wouldn't work.

"We can't understand that. Why wouldn't it work?" said Cashman.

Irish Independent