Saturday 18 November 2017

GAA chiefs to examine Cody's 'criminal' ref comment

Concern over Kilkenny manager's reaction to 'criminal' free decision

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody - pictured with selector Michael Dempsey at the end of the All-Ireland final replay win over Tipperary - has stood by his criticism of referee Barry Kelly. Photo: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody - pictured with selector Michael Dempsey at the end of the All-Ireland final replay win over Tipperary - has stood by his criticism of referee Barry Kelly. Photo: David Maher / SPORTSFILE
Colm Keys

Colm Keys

The GAA's Central Competition Controls Committee are expected to examine Brian Cody's comments relating to referee Barry Kelly to see if the 10 time All-Ireland winning manager could have a disciplinary case to answer.

Cody took issue with Kelly's awarding of a late free in the drawn All-Ireland hurling final which John O'Dwyer struck narrowly wide. The Kilkenny boss described the decision to award the free in the first place, after Brian Hogan was adjudged to have charged into Padraic Maher as "criminal."

The nature of Cody's comments on Kelly will draw the interest of CCCC after what has been a difficult few weeks for referees in both codes.

Generally CCCC have tended to overlook comments by managers which relate to refereeing performances but this may be viewed differently as the comments were not made in the 'heat of the moment' after a game.

Cody maintained that his critique of the decision was "the truth."

Kilkenny have been critical of Kelly's handling of incidents in some of their games before, including the end of the drawn All-Ireland final with Galway in 2012 when Davy Glennon was awarded a free after a challenge by Jackie Tyrrell, and last year when Kelly issued Henry Shefflin with two yellow cards and sent him off. Kilkenny later had Shefflin's red card rescinded.

Earlier this year the GAA's director-general Paraic Duffy commented in his annual report how it seemed to him that "criticism of referees by team officials is now considered routine and acceptable."

He acknowledged that suspensions were rare but felt the current two-month penalty for 'discrediting the Association' was too much of a barrier and that withdrawal of sideline privileges might be a better avenue.

Irish Independent

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