Getting teams earlier just won’t happen

The annual GAA Congress will be held in Derry in a couple of weeks and the motions will shortly be considered by each County Executive. Most delegates come mandated to vote in a particular way on each motion at Congress, writes Nickey Brennan.

The annual GAA Congress will be held in Derry in a couple of weeks and the motions will shortly be considered by each County Executive. Most delegates come mandated to vote in a particular way on each motion at Congress, writes Nickey Brennan.

This year’s Congress agenda has 73 motions. Three are in the name of Central Council; 22 come from the Football Advisory Committee; 27 come from the Rules Advisory Committee; seven come via other Central Committees and provincial councils, while the remaining 14 motions come from clubs.

Caught my eye

I will cover the motions and other Congress matters over the coming weeks, but Motion 49 caught my eye when the details were issued last week.

That motion seeks to amend Rule 6.32 of the Official Guide (Part 1) 2012 by adding a new section to read – “In all other senior championship games the placing of teams shall be given to the Director General, for issue to the media, by 12 noon, four days prior to the game (eg Wednesday 12 noon for a Sunday game)’.

The sting in the tail is that failure to comply with this new rule, provided of course that it is passed at Congress, would see counties fined €500 for non-compliance.

I have my doubts if this motion, even if passed, will work. It is very easy to issue a team-layout by the proposed deadline, but nowhere in the motion does it mention the accuracy of the team supplied when compared to the actual line-out the following weekend.

Of course teams should be supplied in ample time for all sections of the media to analyse the line-outs, but team managers now call the shots, so I do not expect anything to change.

Name a panel

The best, I believe, we can hope for is that a panel is named by the proposed deadline and a team is furnished one hour before the game commences.

With so many team and positional changes now taking place before the throw-in, can any reader see this proposed rule change being adhered to by team officials?

I would like to see it implemented and fully complied with by every county, but I have grave doubts it will happen.

Until we have wording that is clear and unambiguous, the proposed motion at the upcoming Congress is no more than wishful thinking.