JOHN FOGARTY: New hand-pass rule is doomed to failure

Whataboutery is usually an exercise best avoided but, bear with us: in this instance, it is worth indulging. We’re trying to imagine the game of Gaelic football without more than three consecutive hand-passes, which will be the situation in a couple of weeks.

We could discuss how counterproductive the limit will be. We could mention how teams, as reports from recent trial matches among colleges sides have claimed, kick the ball back as soon as they hit three to restart the process for fear they might lose possession with a kick forward.

All-Ireland winning former Cork footballer and Electric Ireland Minor All Stars judge Daniel Goulding gives a training session to Tinahely’s minor GAA side in Co Wicklow yesterday. Picture: Sportsfile.

We could suggest the best inter-county teams are so savvy that they — like hurlers bounce the ball to themselves to break a possession and therefore catch the ball more than twice — will purposely break the chain of hand-passes with something like a deliberate hand-pass to ground in front of their intended target, a spilled solo or a ground kick, that the referee has to recount.

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