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Portumna relief as Galway hurling championship resumes

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Mike Monaghan, Portumna manager: 'It has been very frustrating for everyone concerned, not just our team'. David Maher / SPORTSFILE

Mike Monaghan, Portumna manager: 'It has been very frustrating for everyone concerned, not just our team'. David Maher / SPORTSFILE

David Maher / SPORTSFILE

Mike Monaghan, Portumna manager: 'It has been very frustrating for everyone concerned, not just our team'. David Maher / SPORTSFILE

All-Ireland club champions Portumna have spoken of their relief that the long deadlock in the Galway hurling championship is over.

They qualified for the final on October 12 and the final is now fixed for December 14, a whopping two months since their semi-final.

"It has been very frustrating for everyone concerned, not just our team," Portumna manager Mike Monaghan said.

"For a while there it was looking like the final might not even take place until after Christmas so it's a relief now that we've got a date for it and can focus properly on it."

The Galway SHC championship has suffered a ridiculously long delay because Turloughmore appealed their disqualification for fielding a player who was ruled illegal for playing in America.

The result of their group game against Beagh was reversed, which put their opponents into the county-quarter-finals, but that couldn't go ahead while their appeal continued.

Their initial appeal went as far as the Disputes Resolution Authority (DRA) who ordered the Galway board to re-hear it and it went all the way to the DRA a second time, which caused a massive six-week delay.

The DRA upheld Galway's decision and Beagh beat Ardrahan in the outstanding quarter-final last weekend. They play Gort in the remaining semi-final next weekend.

Turloughmore have said they regretted the inconvenience caused by the delay but vehemently criticised the decision to suspend them, describing it as "draconian".

"It was with great reluctance that Turloughmore hurling club found itself fighting for their championship existence within the confines of a board room," they said.

"The club feels that there needs to be a hard look at the official rule book of the GAA where a club member, who has played all his hurling from the age of 6 to senior level, is deemed ineligible or worse still called 'illegal'."

Irish Independent