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GAA Issue Clarifications On New Rules Two Days Before League Starts

GAA Issue Clarifications On New Rules Two Days Before League Starts
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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At a Croke Park media briefing on Thursday afternoon, the GAA issued clarifications to the mark and sin bin rules. Along with the new kick-out rule, the advance mark and 10-minute sin-binning for a black card offence have been introduced to Gaelic football for the 2020 season.

Just two days before the start of the league, the clarifications were explained by Donal Smyth, the GAA's match officials manager.

The mark clarifications include two tweaks to the kick-out mark which was in play last year.

Mark/Advanced Mark

Rule 2.12 Mark (1) (ii)

When a player catches the ball cleanly on or inside a 45m line from a kick in play (i.e. not from set-play) delivered by an attacking player on or beyond the opposing team's 45m line, that travels at least 20m and without it touching the ground.

1. The Referee will award the mark by blowing his whistle, the player shall signify to the Referee if he is availing of the free-kick by immediately raising his arm upright and then taking the kick himself from the hands. The free kick shall be taken from the point where the Mark is awarded except in the case of a Mark awarded to an attacking team inside a 13m line when the free shall be taken from the point on the 13m line, directly in line with where the Mark is awarded.

2. Please also note that for all marks (the advance mark and the kickout mark) the following provisions apply; the player will now be allowed 15 seconds to take the mark (it was 5 seconds previously). The opposing players must retreat 13m (which was 10 previously).


3. If a player claims the mark, he cannot opt to play on.

4: Play on immediately: If the player decides to play on they may not be challenged for the ball until he carries the ball up to a maximum of 4 consecutive steps or holds the ball for no longer than the time needed to take 4 steps, and/or makes one act of kicking, hand passing, bouncing or toe tapping the ball. R 2.12(b).

5: If a player who has won a mark and opts to play on immediately is illegally challenged then a free shall be awarded to the attacking player. It’s worth noting that if he is fouled in the square then a penalty will be awarded to the attacking team.


6: It should also be noted that as a Kick-out Mark is considered a “set play” in the playing Rules, players will not be able to claim an Advanced Mark from the free kick that follows the awarding of a kick-out Mark.

7: If the Referee determines that the player who makes the Mark has been injured in the process and is unable to take the kick, the Referee shall direct the Player’s nearest team mate to take the kick, but this may only be allowed in exceptional circumstances.

Sin Bin

1: A player who has been black-carded is sent to the Sin Bin for 10 minutes. The time activation for Sin Bin will commence when the game restarts after the dismissal of the player.


2: After the 10 minutes has elapsed, a player can only return to the field of play at a break in play, and with the permission of the referee.

If a player returns to the field of play without the permission of the Referee, he shall be dealt with under Rule 6.1 “to challenge the authority of the Referee, linesman or side-line official”.

Penalty: Yellow Card. (In effect this would result with the player being sent off because a black card followed by yellow card results in a Red card)


3: if a goalkeeper receives a black card, it is at the discretion of the relevant team management as to how to address this matter, eg: they may choose to use a substitute or use an outfield player (Note: if an outfield player is selected, he must wear a distinctive top if he wishes to avail of the protection provided to goalkeepers as per rule).

4: A player who is in the Sin Bin at the end of extra time, and who has served his 10 minutes but has not returned to (as there was no break in play) is eligible to be involved in a penalty shoot-out.

5: If a player commits a further aggressive infraction while in the Sin Bin, the Referee will issue the player with the relevant card, he will be sent off and cannot return to the game.


1: The kick-out is to be taken from the 20-metre line, from the centre-point, and from the ground.

2: The ball cannot be kicked backwards.

3: All players shall be outside the 20-metre line, outside the semi-circle, and 13 metres from the ball until it has been kicked.


4: The ball shall travel not less than 13 metres and outside the 20-metre line before being played by another player of the defending team.

5: If the goalkeeper is not taking the kick-out, he shall stay within the small rectangle and all other players except the player taking the kick-out shall be outside the 20-metre line and 13 metres from the ball.

Top picture credit: Sportsfile

See Also: History-Making Wexford Champions Dreaming Of Croke Park Glory



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