Ian Galvin handed one-match ban after red card against Cork

Clare forward Ian Galvin has been handed a one-match ban after receiving a red card in the Munster hurling championship match against Cork. As a result he will miss the weekend’s meeting with All-Ireland champions Limerick, in Ennis.

The news emerged after Thursday’s meeting of a specially convened hearings committee, held remotely. It is not known whether Clare will appeal the suspension.

A wider controversy had erupted earlier in the week when the GAA’s central hearings committee ruled its original deliberations null and void because of attempts to canvass its members in respect of the initial challenge to the sending-off, which was for an alleged strike with the butt of Galvin’s hurl on Cork corner back, Seán O’Donoghue.

Referee Paud O’Dwyer consulted with one of his umpires, who reported the incident as a strike. O’Dwyer then showed Galvin, who vehemently disputed the decision, a red card.

On receiving the referee’s report, the central competitions control committee proposed a one-match suspension, which the player opted to challenge at the central hearings committee.

The CHC met on Monday and chair Brian Rennick asked did anyone believe they had a conflict of interest and apart from one committee member, who had lived in Cork but whose bona fides were accepted by Clare, none arose.

Before they deliberated, however, several members reported that they had been contacted in an apparent attempt to influence the outcome. The hearing was accordingly deemed ‘null and void’.

A further issue was raised about the status of one of the Clare delegation and whether they had had a right of audience at the hearing but that was subsequently resolved.

The matter was remitted to the GAA’s management committee, which made two preliminary decisions: firstly, to investigate who had made contact with the CHC members in advance of the hearing and whether to charge that individual with breach of Rule 7.3 (w):

“No member of the association may communicate with any member of the competitions control committee or the hearings committee with a view to influencing the outcome of the hearing. Unauthorised communication in breach of this rule shall be treated as ‘misconduct considered to have discredited the association’. This rule shall not, however, prevent any witness giving relevant evidence at a hearing.”

The minimum penalty for breach of this rule is eight weeks, rising to expulsion from the association.

Any efforts to canvass members of the CHC came as news to county officials and team management and is regarded as particularly inopportune given that they believe Galvin’s case to be strong.

For video evidence to exculpate a player, it needs to prove that the infraction reported did not in fact happen. In this case, the altercation between the players is obscured but it was argued that the hurl in Galvin’s hand hardly moves, let alone with sufficient force to strike O’Donoghue a forceful jab.

The player is accordingly ruled out – pending a decision to appeal – of Sunday’s match in Ennis between the Munster championship’s two remaining unbeaten teams.


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