Monday 21 October 2019

Why have a rule if it can be ignored?

First Antrim, then Wicklow, who is next? And what impact will it have in terms of respect for regulations? (stock photo)
First Antrim, then Wicklow, who is next? And what impact will it have in terms of respect for regulations? (stock photo)
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

First Antrim, then Wicklow, who is next? And what impact will it have in terms of respect for regulations?

Antrim chairman Ciarán McCavana intervened during a free-taking shoot-out (why wasn't it penalties?) to decide the winners of the Lámh Dhearg-Portglenone SFC semi-final replay. At 9-9, he ordered that proceedings end and the game go to a second replay.

His Wicklow counterpart Martin Fitzgerald did the same, bringing the Blessington v Arklow Geraldines/Ballymoney semi-final to an end when extra-time and five penalties each failed to separate the sides.

Both chairmen made the decisions for honourable reasons, deciding that in the circumstances replays were warranted. But where does that leave rules? If a method is in place to settle drawn games, should it not have been respected?

Referees are expected to make tough calls even late in extra-time in big games, so why should county chairmen have the power to intervene during a pre-arranged process. Nobody wants to see a club's season ended on a penalty shoot-out, but then why have the rule in place if it can be overturned so easily?

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