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Banbridge put appeal to Hockey Ireland on hold after latest twist in European affair

 

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Banbridge are delaying a proposed appeal to Hockey Ireland concerning the allocation of European places for next year as they bid to secure one of the two on offer. (stock photo)

Banbridge are delaying a proposed appeal to Hockey Ireland concerning the allocation of European places for next year as they bid to secure one of the two on offer. (stock photo)

©INPHO/Cathal Noonan

Banbridge are delaying a proposed appeal to Hockey Ireland concerning the allocation of European places for next year as they bid to secure one of the two on offer. (stock photo)

Banbridge are delaying a proposed appeal to Hockey Ireland concerning the allocation of European places for next year as they bid to secure one of the two on offer.

It's rumoured that the sport's national governing body could step in and attempt to resolve the situation, thus possibly negating the need for any further appeals after Lisnagarvey were awarded the No.1 seeding.

The Hillsborough club were initially ranked second behind Three Rock Rovers, who were handed a place in the more prestigious European Hockey League next year.

Those places were allocated on the basis of the last completed season in 2018-19 with the recent campaign being declared null and void due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Garvey were looking destined to lift the title as they were five points clear at the top of the table with two games in hand when the season fell victim to the virus.

They lodged an appeal on that basis, believing that they should have been awarded the top seeding, and had it upheld by an independent panel.

In light of that decision, Banbridge felt they should be entitled to the second place in Europe as they were the nearest team to Garvey in the standings when the season was voided.

However, Three Rock retained the second seeding they had been handed in the original Hockey Ireland ruling before Garvey's appeal was successful, despite the fact that they were sitting in fourth place in the table before the Irish Hockey League was abandoned in March due to the pandemic.

Following the appeal being upheld by the three-person independent panel, Hockey Ireland revealed in a brief statement yesterday that they had noted the decision in favour of Lisnagarvey.

Chief executive Jerome Pels said: "The board of Hockey Ireland is taking notice of the Appeal Panel decision and considering if any further action or decisions are needed."

Belfast Telegraph