Belfast Telegraph

Monday 30 May 2016

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Athletics Ireland are told they must settle Mills-Cuddihy dispute

Published 10/07/2012

Joanna Mills
Joanna Mills

The Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) has batted the women's relay selection controversy right back at the feet of Athletics Ireland (AAI).

The OCI confirmed they received a request for an appeal from a solicitor representing Kilkenny 400m runner Caitriona Cuddihy, who was left out of the team after Ulster girl Joanna Mills successfully appealed her controversial omission.

But OCI spokesman Jack McGouran said they will not handle the appeal until they are satisfied that Athletics Ireland followed all the proper procedures in their own internal selection and appeal process.

Athletics Ireland chief executive John Foley confirmed they have had a formal request for information from the OCI and are responding to it “as a matter of urgency”.

It is understood that one procedural hiccup did occur in the AAI's appeal process.

When Mills formally objected to being omitted from the squad, AAI was duty-bound to contact all of the other members of the relay team, inform them an appeal had been lodged and offer give them all an opportunity to make a personal submission on the matter.

Athletics Ireland actually followed correct procedure and did this.

But they informed the athletes of this by email and the address that AAI used was not recognised by the various athletes' internet accounts.

As a result, the notification went into the athletes' ‘junk mail' boxes and was not discovered until Saturday night, which was after Mills' appeal had been heard.

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