Sunday 16 December 2018

Ryan believes penalties now a 'guessing game'

Dublin Senior hurler Paul Ryan
Dublin Senior hurler Paul Ryan
Cian Tracey

Cian Tracey

Paul Ryan reckons that the GAA's new rule which only allows goalkeepers to face penalties in hurling could have been changed in a far more simplistic manner.

The matter has regularly been a source of controversy in recent seasons as it was widely believed that some penalty-takers like Cork's Anthony Nash were endangering their opponents by striking the sliotar from well inside the 20-metre line.

The rule was introduced on a trial basis in January but has since been passed by the GAA Congress.

The Dublin forward is a regular penalty-taker for his side but he insists that the whole debate could have been put to bed by not allowing goalkeepers' hurleys to be used to strike penalties.

"I think it could have been solved if they'd just got rid of the goalie hurl.

"If they got rid of the goalie hurl from anyone coming down to take it and just keep three on the line," Ryan said at the launch of the AIG/JF Dunne Insurance Pupil Protector Plan.

"There wouldn't have been any need to switch the people on the line and switch people anywhere else. Just take the goalie hurl out of the free, and you wouldn't be connecting with it as cleanly.

"I don't know what they're thinking. I would have seen it as an easy issue to solve, just taking the goalie hurl away.

"Especially if a goalie's coming down to take the free, if he's switching to an outfield hurl, he's not going to connect with it as (he would) using a goalie hurl," he added.

The 26-year-old maintained that penalty-takers will have to revise their technique but he expects far more goals to be scored in this season's championship.

"It's after going from one extreme to the other. So you could say it's easier - but nothing's easy in front of a few thousand," he smiled.

"You're under the threat now that the 'keeper is just going to move. Rather than relying on reaction, he's going to be in that spot before - so he's going to pick a spot, and you're going to pick a spot, and that's going to be a guessing game."

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