It is not often that a referee from outside Ulster is appointed to take charge of two successive matches in the senior provincial football championship.
But last night the decision was made to award Meath whistler Cormac Reilly the Tyrone v Monaghan clash at Healy Park, Omagh on Sunday.
Joe McQuillan (Cavan) had initially been appointed to take charge of the game but it is understood that Reilly’s impeccable handling of the Armagh v Down match last Saturday has persuaded the powers that be to appoint him for the Omagh showdown.
In a week in which Meath captain Seamus Kenny admitted that the manner in which his county won the Leinster last year title affected him, the spotlight has swung strongly onto the whistlers now that the championship season is gathering pace.
Meath, of course, only took delivery of the Leinster crown after Tyrone referee Martin Sludden allowed a ‘goal’ scored by Joe Sheridan to stand even though it was clear that the player had thrown the ball into the Louth net.
Kenny said: “No one went out to ‘cheat' in the Leinster final. When the criticism got personal it was tough to take. I saw some of the stuff written about Joe, and I got some stuff myself. My father Paul Kenny played with, and managed Louth, so I'd have the height of respect for everyone from Louth.
“At the start of the year all we wanted to do was win a Leinster title. We achieved it, and then for everyone to pretty much take it away from us was tough.”