Saturday 17 March 2018

Derek McGrath reveals why Conor Gleeson isn't appealing All-Ireland ban

Waterford's Austin Gleeson. Photo: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile
Waterford's Austin Gleeson. Photo: Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile
Conor McKeon

Conor McKeon

DEREK McGrath revealed today that Waterford management and Conor Gleeson jointly decided to accept his All-Ireland final ban prior to last night’s hearing in the event of the Central Hearings Committee confirming the suspension.

The CHC last night imposed the one match ban triggered by Gleeson's red card for striking Patrick Horgan with his hurley with minimal force late on in their recent All-Ireland semi-final.

Waterford sought to have the infraction downgraded to a yellow card offence but the CHC rejected their claims and imposed the ban.

Despite having the avenue of an appeal open to them, McGrath revealed at today’s pre All-Ireland final press day that Waterford will not pursue Gleeson’s case to the CAC.

“We spoke in advance of the hearing last night and we spoke about possible outcomes in advance, and I won’t say we’ve exhausted every outcome, but we’ve made a decision as a management - and player - to leave it at that now,” McGrath explained.

 “That’s basically it.”

Waterford took Tadhg de Búrca’s case to both the CAC and the DRA after he was sent off for interference with the helmet of Wexford player Harry Kehoe in the All-Ireland quarter-final, although he subsequently missed the semi-final Cork victory after both attempts proved fruitless.

“I’d have spoken to Conor about the different circumstances, there are different circumstances with each case,” McGrath outlined.

“The loco parentis issue, the duty of care, I was up with his mother yesterday and they’re very supportive of the stance we felt we should take, which is to go to the first hearing, see how  that goes, and our approach then was to get the red reduced to a yellow in terms of the infraction.

“When that wasn’t going to be successful as a result of last night, we felt it was a case of a different scenario to what Tadhg faced.

“That was the reasoning behind it, rather than a duty of care to the players.

“These fellas are well able to accept that each situation is different, we’re moving on to look forward to the All-Ireland.”

McGrath also disclosed that he “wasn’t worried” about the possibility of Austin Gleeson would incur a ban despite clearly making contact with Luke Meade’s helmet in the same game.

“I was aware of the conversations that were taking place outside when immediately leaving Croke Park,” he said.

“But when it wasn’t part of what had happened, given the route we’d been down with Tadhg in terms of the referee’s report being sacrosanct and all the judicial learnings from the two weeks previous, which the management had immersed itself in behind the scenes, I was confident from the outset.”

“I was confident based on conversations which had taken place with our own on-field players in terms of bringing back information as per conversations between referee and linesman.

“I was confident an adjudication had been reached on the given day.”


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