British army side will remain in London GAA competition

GAA bosses have quashed the controversial proposal to throw a British army team from the London Junior Football Championship.

At the weekend, GAA director general Paraic Duffy met London County Board chairman John Lacey, county secretary Mark Gottsche, and Granuaile Hurling Club chairman Donal Corbett. At the meeting, it was directed that GAA rules do not allow for the reversal of an approval to affiliate a new club — which in this instance referred to a team from the Irish Guards whose inclusion was agreed upon last September.

An official statement from Croke Park read: “In relation to the issue of the affiliation of the Irish Guards’ club, the meeting was told that the Ard Stiúrthóir had explained in a meeting with the Chairperson and Secretary of London County Committee and the Chairperson of Granuaile Hurling club that GAA rules do not allow for the proposed rescindment of the decision to approve its affiliation.

“Central Council will work with London County Committee and the Granuaile Hurling club to resolve issues or concerns arising from this affiliation.”

The proposal, made by the Granuaile club, sparked controversy last week when first reported in the Examiner.

Croke Park reacted by instructing London officials to remove the proposal from last Monday’s county board meeting when it was to be put to the city’s clubs.

The agreement to allow a team from the Irish Guards participate in the London Junior Football Championship was widely welcome when it was voted in last September.

However, the issue proved divisive with then London chairman Noel O’Sullivan casting the deciding ballot after the vote was tied 15-15.

In recent days, Granuaile moved to overturn that decision by submitting their proposal to the London County Board. The new London chairman, John Lacey, is a Granuaile stalwart.

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