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GPA strikes out for action

By John Campbell

The possibility of strike action by members of the Gaelic Players Association has evoked mixed reaction within the GAA.

With the results of the GPA's ballot on strike action not due to be made known until next week, there is speculation that the majority of the members balloted will accept the executive's recommendation to go on strike.

This course of action has been precipitated because the GAA and the Republic's government have failed so far to agree to a formula whereby grants being made to the Association can be paid.

There have been hints that a solution to the impasse may have been found but to date a stand-off exists.

The GPA will hold its AGM in Dublin's CityWest Hotel on Friday, ahead of its annual awards ceremony that evening.

And chief executive Dessie Farrell has already confirmed that the grants issue has driven a wedge between his Association and the GAA.

"We have all become a little tired of this long drawn out process," said former Dublin footballer Farrell.

Meanwhile, Tyrone manager Mickey Harte expects Kieran McGeeney to be a success in management and is looking forward to pitting his wits against the new Kildare boss when the sides clash in the opening round of the 2008 National Football League.

Amazingly, it will be the first competitive meeting between the counties since Harte became Red Hands manager at the end of 2002 and it will also be McGeeney's first taste of management since he brought the curtain down on his illustrious playing career a few months ago.

Harte said: "Kieran McGeeney has just come out of football himself and he obviously hasn't got a track record in management, but he's a very aware player and an aware player will always be useful in terms of management.

"He's gone about it in a very sensible way and has Paul Grimley with him who had loads of experience. I think he has put together a good package."

Belfast Telegraph


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