Tuesday 17 July 2018

Should sliotars be heavier so they don't travel as far?

Mícheál Ó Scanaill

Has it become too easy to score from long range in hurling?

Goals seem to be rarer and rarer in the hurling championship with free takers having the ability to score from well inside their own half as opposed to lobbing the ball into the square like in the past.

Speaking on Independent.ie's GAA Podcast, ‘The Throw In’, in association with Allianz, Irish Independent GAA correspondent Michael Verney complained about the ease with which the ball travels long distances during games

He has called on sliotars to be made heavier to combat the phenomenon.

"I think the ball is way too light," he said. "I’ve been saying that for a while. I think it travels way too far. I don’t think that when Joe Canning steps up to a ball on his own 45-yard line for a free he should be able to score.

“I think that should just be restricted a small bit, make the ball a small bit heavier, ever so slightly.”

Verney, who played as a corner-back for Offaly, noted that with of goalkeepers and long range free takers shooting from deep in their own half, defenders’ role on a hurling pitch has become less important.

“There are goalkeepers taking frees and it’s going over from their own 45-yard line which would have been unheard of a couple of years ago realistically”, he said.

“I know playing inside in the fullback line, it’s actually a nightmare sometimes because you could have no impact on the game whatsoever. The ball is just being pinged over from 80 or 90 yards and its very tough, you might touch the ball twice in an hour.”

Subscribe to The Throw-In, Independent.ie's weekly GAA podcast in association with Allianz, for the best in GAA discussion and analysis every week, with some of the biggest names in football and hurling from Joe Brolly, Tomás Ó'Sé and John Mullane.

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