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Congress to be told that ban must be shortened

By John Campbell

A call for the winter training ban for county squads to be restricted to November, a plea that beaten provincial finalists should be granted a 13-day reprieve before participating in Qualifiers and a demand that the Central Competitions Control Committee assume full responsibility for retrospective disciplinary action.

These are just some of the 49 motions that will be dealt with at tomorrow’s GAA Congress in Mullingar when delegates from every county will have an input to the annual stocktaking exercise.

The motion from the Portarlington club in Laois suggesting that the county squads winter training ban should be enforced for the month of November only is certain to get big support from Ulster.

As things stand, the ban applies to both November and December meaning that teams must commence the Dr McKenna Cup competition in early January without having had the benefit of squad sessions. The current ban also means that newly-appointed managers are afforded little or no time in which to acquaint themselves with their new set-ups.

The Donaghmoyne club from Monaghan is urging the GAA to ensure that beaten provincial finalists are granted a 13-day reprieve as opposed to the current six-day breather they get before participating in the fourth round of the All-Ireland Qualifiers.

This has for some time been a bone of contention as has been the fact that provincial champions who are then beaten do not get a second bite at the cherry.

The demand that the Central Competitions Control Committee, currently chaired by Seamus Woods from Carrickmore, should assume full responsibility for retrospective disciplinary action is certain to create lively debate.

The motion urges that in situations where the CCCC feels that an incident during a game warrants closer attention then it should take complete control of the matter.

The Robert Emmets club from Antrim will certainly create a stir with their motion which calls for the GAA to scrap the St Patrick’s Day club finals date.

The club suggests that the provincial and All-Ireland club championships be run off before the start of the National Leagues.

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