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Tomás Ó Sé Thinks Kerry Benefitted Unfairly From Contentious Rule In All-Ireland Win

Tomás Ó Sé Thinks Kerry Benefitted Unfairly From Contentious Rule In All-Ireland Win
Gary Connaughton
By Gary Connaughton
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The GAA has a habit of tinkering with rules within the sport. It seems that hardly a year goes by without some major changes to either Gaelic football or hurling.

The advanced mark has been one of the more drastic in recent times. In attempt to bring more long kicking into the game, it was hoped the law would also reduce the effectiveness of teams defending their own 45 with large numbers.

However, it remains to be largely unpopular.

Tomás Ó Sé calls for end of advanced mark

The issue with the rule in its current form is that it rewards teams for relatively straightforward passes. You can pop the ball into a player's chest in space from 20 metres and be presented with a scoring opportunity from a free.


It takes away some elements of defending in the game.

David Clifford of Kerry call for a mark during the GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final match between Kerry and Mayo. Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

Speaking to the Irish Examiner, Tomás Ó Sé called for the rule to be brought to an end, despite the fact that his own county benefitted from it in the All-Ireland final.

It is not part of our game, it is not our game. It's like a free kick and the back has done nothing wrong.

I still see confusion among players in matches when they don’t know if it’s a mark or not. Different referees referee it differently.

I don’t agree with (David) Clifford getting two marks in the first half of the final. Paul Geaney got one too and they all went a long way to Kerry winning it because without them they were struggling otherwise.

Being at the game, as a Kerryman I was saying ‘great’ when they got those points but it is wrong and it was unfair on the Galway backs...

Officials are happy to retain the status quo if nobody is making a big song and dance but they have to ask those at the coalface exactly what they think of it. I would genuinely have no problem in saying that I've yet to meet anyone who speaks positively about the advanced mark...

The same argument I made against it when it came in is the same I make now – it dilutes the art of defending. We brought it in to adjust to the mass defence but there is no rule that can’t do that. I know what they’re trying to do but it doesn’t do what it set out to do.

You can read his comments in full here.

Ó Sé is far from along in being a critic of the rule, with a number of prominent voices within the GAA speaking out against it in recent years.


It remains to be seen if the relevant authorities will consider changing the law moving forward.

SEE ALSO: 17 Famous Irish People Who Played Minor GAA At County Level

Paul Mescal Con O'Callaghan minor GAA football



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