10 things we learned from the 2013 GAA Annual report
Released by Director General Paraic Duffy this morning, it covers all sorts of stuff, from Friday night games to concussion.
Fresh off the presses, the 2013 Annual Report of the GAA's top man Paraic Duffy is the usual mix of facts, figures and a few juicy nuggets of news. Here's the most eye-catching items we've spotted so far.
- All-Ireland replays will all be on Saturdays, with an early evening start. 'Central Council has already taken the decision that, in the event of a replayed All-Ireland final in the future it too, will have an early-evening Saturday throw-in time.'
- International Rules Series was a 'disappointment', with 'competitive games' deemed a requirement for the series to be a success.
- Friday night games probably won't happen again. Report calls the criticisms of players of the idea on Twitter as 'valid' regarding time off work and preparation for big games. They also stress no funds will be made available to compensate players for the time involved if they did skip work so it looks like last year's game between Laois and Carlow will remain a 'once off'.
- Donegal and Dublin get a slap on the wrist for 'Bitegate'. Both counties 'emerge with[out] any credit' in how they dealt with the bite inflicted on Paddy McBrearty in a league game between Dublin and Donegal in April.
- Suggestion that criticism of officials could result in touchline bans as current penalty of eight-week suspension deemed too severe so never enforced.
- Releasing dummy teams comes in for criticism, with the practice called 'an embarrassment' and 'disrespectful' and calls on county committees to do their job and ensure correct teams are named. Armagh are cited as an example of how it should be done.
- Hawk-Eye, bar one well publicised 'human error' in 2013 is deemed a success and the roll out of the system to other grounds to be explored 'as a matter of urgency'.
- Rugby World Cup bid gets a mention, with a reminder that improvements to GAA grounds would have to be 'funded, in large part, by the Government'.
- Concussion to be focused on more in 2014, with various initiatives set out to educate players and coaching staff on the topic
- The idea of a 'Team Ulster' that could compete in the 2016 hurling Championship merits 'serious consideration'
The full report is available here, and we will continue to dig through it for further info