Friday 24 November 2017

Off the Ball: Curb Dublin GAA clubs' unfair edge with import quota

Armagh’s Kevin Dyas transferred to Kilmacud Crokes last week. Photo: Oliver McVeigh / Sportsfile
Armagh’s Kevin Dyas transferred to Kilmacud Crokes last week. Photo: Oliver McVeigh / Sportsfile

Colm Parkinson

Another week, another inter-county transfer to a Dublin club. Actually this week there were two. Armagh's Kevin Dyas transferred to Kilmacud Crokes and Fermanagh's Tomas Corrigan moved to St Oliver Plunkett's Eoghan Ruadh.

Kilmacud's forward line now boasts three intercounty stars, none of whom are from Dublin: Brian Kavanagh from Longford, Eugene Keating from Cavan and now Dyas.

Eugene Keating used to play with Malahide club St Sylvesters and last season transferred to Crokes. How is a transfer like that in keeping with the ethos of the GAA?

My transfer to Parnells was incredibly easy. I didn't even live in the local area but my transfer was approved.

Parnells proceeded to make a joke out of the system and, over the next few years, transferred in Darren Rooney, MJ Tierney, Colm Begley, Andy Mallon, Conor Mortimer, Andreas Doyle, Ciaran McKeever, Rory Quinlivan and Johnny Murtagh.

Transfers are still being rubber-stamped with worrying regularity by the Dublin county board.

These transfers give these teams an unfair advantage. In the Dublin championship why should an up-and-coming team like Clontarf have to play the might of Kilmacud Crokes who are boosted by three intercounty players? If Crokes win the Dublin championship, why should Moorefield, Garycastle or Portlaoise have to play them with their unfair advantage?

A nationwide rule prevents amalgamated clubs representing their county in provincial competitions. In 2004 Ballyroan Abbey won the Laois county title but went no further in the competition.

Ballyroan Abbey was an amalgamation of Ballyroan, a tiny village and Abbeyleix, a club more noted for hurling. Ballyroan had 12 on the team and Abbeyleix three.

It's laughable that Kilmacud Crokes, who boast Dublin stars Cian O'Sullivan, Rory O'Carroll, Paul Mannion, Kevin Nolan and Mark Vaughan, would be allowed play in the Leinster club championship with three extra intercounty players.

Dublin county champions should enter the Leinster championship minus their imported players. In the interest of fairness, this is something the Leinster council needs to look closely at. Dublin clubs have won eight of the last 11 Leinster titles.

The Dublin county board needs to tighten controls up too. They need to introduce a quota of one or two intercounty imports per club.

I'm sure Naomh Olaf, just down the road from Stillorgan, would have welcomed Dyas with open arms. CP

Irish Independent

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