Both Charleville and Douglas GAA clubs have been thrown out of the Cork Premier U21 Hurling championship and face up to €2,500 in fines each as a result of the behaviour of mentors and players in a fourth-round tie last Saturday week, writes Eoghan Cormican.
The game in Fermoy was abandoned by referee Patrick O’Driscoll after 42 minutes, and following consideration of the referee’s report and eyewitness evidence, Cork GAA officials issued its recommended sanctions Monday night to both clubs.
It is also understood that individuals, not including players, from both clubs have been hit with lengthy bans as a result of unsavoury incidents along the sideline during the second half of the game, described as “very nasty” by one journalist covering the game.
Both clubs were last night considering whether to bring their appeal to the Munster Council.
After an initial Cork County Board CCCC investigation into the incidents last Thursday, neither club accepted the proposed sanctions and fines, which it is believed amounted to €5,000 per club. The Board’s Hearings Committee then met on Sunday under the chairmanship of Brian Barrett with both Charleville and Douglas witnesses to the incidents providing additional evidence.
Erroneous reports on Monday morning indicated the game would be replayed this Wednesday, but the Hearings committee upheld that both Charleville and Douglas be ejected from the Premier U21 competition, sending Valley Rovers – who were awaiting the winners in the last eight – straight through to the semi-final.
Charleville were leading the fourth-round tie by four points when their Cork hurler Darragh Fitzgibbon received a straight red card in the second half. After a number of skirmishes, the referee believed order had been restored, but a second outbreak of fighting, which involved people on the side-line, forced him to call off the game with 18 minutes remaining. One of the Douglas players was hospitalised after being struck in the fracas.