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A few little tweaks could make it great year for Gaelic games

By Declan Bogue

If, by any chance, you are looking forward to a rather less eventful 2017 than the previous 12 months, then tough. There is no truth whatsoever in the idiom that things couldn't get worse. They can always get worse.

But this year, we wish for a simpler, more pastoral time of it.

For example, we start with Armagh and note their propensity for morning press conferences. Perhaps other counties might follow their example.

And could we make a request that the scoreboard operators in Croke Park get a second opinion in the coming season after the hash of the Antrim-Meath Christy Ring final.

We really hope that the man - or indeed woman - appointed as sixth official can bring along an abacus to their appointments this year, and keep an eye on say, Laois, as they prepare their seventh sub of the day to enter the field of play.

Could Hawkeye be introduced for ladies' football? And that responsibility, of course, lies with the Ladies Gaelic Football Association.

And finally, could everyone just make themselves familiar with a certain vote that took place in Derry at the GAA Congress of 2013, when the black card was voted in - not, as Diarmuid Connolly and Alan Brogan seem to believe, in response to Sean Cavanagh's drag-down on Conor McManus later that year.

• THE new Down hurling management team of Marty Mallon, Paul Coulter and Gary Savage got their reign off to an impressive start last night at Queen's, beating Armagh 3-30 to 2-16 in the Conor McGurk Tournament opener. Derry defeated Donegal, 4-29 to 1-10.

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