‘65 shoot-out’ could return in summer
The free-taking competition that decided the Allianz NHL quarter-final between Clare and Limerick last weekend could come into play in bigger games this summer.
Shoot-outs are used if teams finish level after two separate periods of extra-time (two periods of 10 minutes each way and after two additional five-minute periods).
And that was the case when Limerick edged Clare as the stipulation was used in national competition for the first time.
However, it will also come into play if necessary in football championship qualifier games, meaning a county’s entire summer could come down to free kicks.
The rule also applies to knock-out games in the league in hurling and football, the preliminary All-Ireland quarter-final in hurling that sees the new Joe McDonagh Cup champions and runners-up play the teams that finish third in the Munster and Leinster round-robin groups. It also applies to the U-20 football championship.
Teams must nominate five players to take their frees in order.
The referee will decide which end the teams shoot into while a toss of coin with the captains will give one skipper the option of going first.
Only points are considered a score, with the game awarded to whichever team has scored the most of their five frees.
Should the teams be level at that stage, the same five free-takers, in the same order, will shoot again in a sudden-death-style finale.
Frees are taken from the 65m line in hurling and from the 45m line, off the ground or from the hands, in football.
Football has already seen a game decided this way after Meath beat Longford in an O’Byrne Cup match in January.