Looks like the Anthony Nash penalty could be a thing of the past
That’s certainly the conclusion one can’t help but draw after the GAA made a change to the rulebook this evening.
After the controversy surrounding an Anthony Nash penalty that was saved by Waterford ‘keeper Stephen O’Keefe in controversial (and very painful) fashion on Sunday, it appeared inevitable that the GAA would step in in an effort to provide clarity to what is and what isn’t allowed when it comes to penalty-taking in the small ball game.
As a result, a penalty or a 20 metre free will have to be struck on or outside the 20metre line and not inside it, as had previously been the case. The player taking the free or penalty will be allowed to bring the ball back up to seven metres from the 20 metre line to aid their run-up.
Defenders attempting to prevent a score will not be able to leave the line until the ball is struck and by ‘struck’ the GAA have made clear that the lifting of the ball is not counted as a strike, as it was interpreted when O’Keefe stopped Nash’s penalty at Semple Stadium on Sunday.
You can read the exact text of the GAA’s rule changes below, but essentially it will result in a fairly dramatic alteration of both penalties and 20 metre frees in hurling, with the initial reaction suggesting that it will lead to examples of cynical play by defenders inside the penalty area on the basis that they’d be far more confident of saving a penalty struck from further out the field.
— Shane Dowling (@dowlerznap) June 10, 2014
The rules will remain in place until GAA Congress next year.
The Management Committee of the GAA has asked Central Council to consider and adjudicate on the following recommendations for Interpretations of Rule in relation to the Playing Rules of Hurling 2.2 Exceptions (i) and (ii), 2.3, 2.5 and 4.16(b)
The terms “taken” or “retaken” in Rules 2.2 Exceptions (i) and (ii) and 2.3 shall mean the ball being “struck”.
A player taking a penalty or a 20m free puck, may bring the ball back up to seven metres from the 20m line for the purposes of making a traditional run at the ball, but shall strike the ball on or outside the 20m line but not inside it.
Exception: In the context of Rule 2.5, if a player taking a penalty or free puck on the actual 20m line fails to lift the ball at the first attempt or fails to strike it with the hurley, and that action causes the ball to marginally cross inside the 20m line, the player, as provided for in this Rule, shall be allowed to strike the ball on the ground without delay.
(a) The players defending a penalty or free puck awarded on the centre point of the 20m line shall stand on their goal-line and may not move towards the 20m line until the ball has been actually struck. ‘Lifting’ the ball with the hurley does not constitute ‘striking the ball’.
(b) The players defending a free puck awarded on the 20m line at a point other than on the centre point of that line shall stand a minimum of 20m from the point of award of the free and may not move closer to that point of award until the ball has been actually struck. ‘Lifting’ the ball with the hurley does not constitute ‘striking the ball’
This Interpretation shall, in accordance with Rule 3.43, Official Guide Part 1, have the force of Rule until Congress 2015, when the issues will be further addressed by way of Motion(s).