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Joe Browley accuses GAA of ‘cowardice’ over decision not to review Crookes extra player and calls for re-run of All-Ireland club final

Joe Brolly insists the GAA’s ‘reputation is at stake’ as controversy continues over Sunday’s controversial All-Ireland club SFC final and the only “respectable option is to order a replay”.

The Illmacud Crookes’ had too many players on the pitch late in the game. Dara Mullin was stationed on the goal line defending the 45 at the death, having been replaced by Connor Casey just seconds earlier. But he didn’t come out until the kick had taken place and the ball was dead.

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It is understood the Glen has sought an explanation from GAA officials this afternoon (MON) and Croke Park have indicated they will leave it to the Derry club whether they wish to raise an objection rather than decide on it.

And speaking on Newstalk’s Off the Ball Tonight (Mon), Brawley insists the GAA is ‘abdicating his responsibility’ by not stepping up and ‘people in the north are saying it would never have happened if it was the second There would be a way.

“The reputation of the GAA is at stake,” said the Derry 1993 All-Ireland winner.

“This is not a personal matter between Wattie Graham and Kilmacud, it is about the integrity of the game. And part one, where there is rule 6.44, is about the basic basic rules of the GAA and one of them is that 15 players Play against 15. And rule 6.44 actually only gives three options, well it only gives three options.

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“Once it is proved that a breach has occurred the GAA can impose either a fine, forfeiture or order a replay. And the rules specifically state that the decision they make will depend on the circumstances does.”

Brawley insisted Paul Mannion’s position on the field – Glenn pushed for a late goal to bring the number of Crokes players on the field to 17 – was not an issue. But he insisted that Mullin taking a position to defend his goal could not be overlooked.

“You have a situation like this where a player who is substituted instead of going out goes to the goal line and takes up a defensive position in the center of the goal line to defend the last critical play,” he said.

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“Don’t forget that the Glen almost scored a goal in the last game when Conor Glass brought him down to the ground and the keeper made a save.

“And on that last play, (Ryan) Doogan, the Maghera full back, he tried to flick the ball and missed by a whisker.

“And if he had flicked it it would have gone towards the goal and you were in that extraordinary position where it could have been Darius Mullin who saved it.

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“You can see him coming out kicking the ball a couple of times in the air and the referee blows the whistle.

“So this is clearly a flagrant breach of the rule. This is a player who continues to take part in the game after being substituted. It has nothing to do with the referee or the linesman – the responsibility within the rule is on the team Only it is kept.

“So it’s not a technical infringement, it’s a major infringement. You have an extra man defending the final play and I think the only respectable option for the GAA is to order a replay.

“And it is most disappointing to me, I think it is a total act of cowardice, an abdication of responsibility by those who say today that they are not…. because they have the power under Rule 6.44.

“(d) It operates in two ways either on the objection of the club and in this case it will be proved because it is accepted that there has been a breach – we can all see that.

“But the committee in charge can investigate it themselves and they have said today oh no, they are not going to do that. I can’t believe it.”

“Had it been the IRFU or FIFA, a replay would have already been ordered and I dare say the general feeling in the reply is that if it were the other way round, a replay would have been ordered.

“There is all manner of speculation as to why the GAA shirked its responsibility and people in the north are saying this would never have happened if it were the other way around, whether rightly or wrongly, it is serious reputational damage.” GAA.

“And now Glenn is in a terrible position to object.”



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