GAA

Explainer: The Tier 2 Championship Vote And Other Motions At Special Congress

Explainer: The Tier 2 Championship Vote And Other Motions At Special Congress

This weekend's Special Congress in Cork is a particularly significant one for the GAA with the proposed Tier 2 championship for Gaelic football on the line.

If the motion is passed, in 2020 only teams from Division 1 and Division 2 of the Allianz Football League will be eligible for the All-Ireland qualifiers as well as teams for the lower divisions who reach their provincial final.

Division 3 and 4 teams knocked out of their provincial championships will go straight into a Tier 2 championship.

Per the Irish Examiner's Eoghan Cormican, there is plenty of support for the motion.

However, there are still reservations amongst players. In an interview RTE last month, the GPA's Programme Co-Ordinator Colm Begley said their members had voted in favour of the general idea but that the timing of the vote and lack of extra games made it unfeasible.

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"The current proposal being put forward doesn't target the areas we want to target."

Speaking to Balls.ie earlier this year, London captain Liam Gavaghan explained why he has in favour of a dropdown tier such as the proposed one but also wanted more games.

I'd like more games in a championship, whether it's a two tier where you would have a second All-Ireland, I'm not so sure. At the end of the day, you still want to play against the best.

I love playing against Galway, I love playing against Mayo, I love playing against the top teams in front of a big crowd. Over here in London, it's what you train for. I would still like to play against the top teams.

Sligo captain Niall Murphy also wanted that chance.

"I've been involved with teams that have beaten Galway, have beaten Roscommon and I've been involved in a team or two that has ran Mayo close as well - the 2012 Connacht final.

"So Sligo has the experience of competing with teams at that level, so that's maybe why you don't hear many Sligo lads coming out and preaching for a B Championship."

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The proposal needs 60% majority backing this weekend. They will also need to decide if it starts from the standings in April 2019 or April 2020.

Other motions to be decided on are those from the trials in the Allianz League earlier this year. They are;

-The introduction of the attacking mark inside the 45m line
-The alteration of the punishment for black card cynical fouls to a 10-minute sin-bin rather than permanent substitution, and a reduction in the number of subs allowed from six to five as a result
-Kick-outs will now be taken from the 20m rather than the 13m line and must travel forward

The most impactful of these three is the introduction of the mark.

Criticism and support has been forthcoming from both sides approaching Saturday. It is also worth bearing in mind that the new Fixtures Calendar Review Task Force are set to make recommendations in November.

Regardless of what happens at Pairc Ui Rinn this weekend, there is no doubt the fall-out will be considerable.

SEE ALSO: Tipp Club Condemn Treatment Of Referee Following Quarter-Final Defeat

Maurice Brosnan

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