Higher Ed committee slammed as Sligo reinstated

IT Sligo and QUB officials have slammed the GAA’s Higher Education committee for claiming both third-level institutions fielded ineligible players in the Sigerson Cup.

Higher Ed committee slammed as Sligo reinstated

IT Sligo were reinstated to the competition after an appeal to the Central Appeals Committee (CAC) on Tuesday night.The westerners were expelled last week for featuring Students Union President Stephen Doak in their 1-9 to 0-8 first-round win over Queens.

IT Sligo successfully argued that the rule preventing full-time Sabbatical Officers from lining out in third-level competitions had been omitted from the current constitution.

Martin McHugh’s charges travel to the Mardyke for tomorrow’s rescheduled quarter-final with champions UCC (2pm).

“We are disappointed to have been dragged through all this. This was not of our making,” said IT Sligo games development officer Michael Harte. “We are pleased that it was shown we weren’t in the wrong.”

He revealed: “The team had stopped training. The good was gone out of it. They’ve a lot of ground to make up.”

There was vindication too for Queens University, Stranmillis students Ciarán O’Hanlon, Tony Donnelly and Greg McCabe with GAA chiefs admitting the trio were entitled to play against IT Sligo.

Queens GAA development officer Aidan O’Rourke said the Belfast University had no interest in seeking a rematch with IT Sligo — instead their fight lay with the Higher Education committee.

“This is a battle we have been fighting for the last three years,” O’Rourke insisted.

“We are quite relieved to be at the end of it now. We are disappointed it came this far. That it came this far was the doing of Comhairle Ardoideachais.

“We weren’t interested in a rematch with IT Sligo, we weren’t interested in playing UCC. We simply wanted to prove players from Stranmillis were eligible to play with Queens. Also, we primarily felt that we needed to take a stand on eligibility issues that exist within our sector. We were one of the founding members of the Higher Education sector. In our 83-year involvement, we have never been thrown out, we have never been disciplined and we have never fielded an ineligible player. We wanted to protect our integrity and we have.”

More in this section

Puzzles logo

Puzzles hub

Sport Push Notifications

By clicking on 'Sign Up' you will be the first to know about our latest and best sporting content on this browser.

Sign Up

Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up
Puzzles logo

Puzzles hub

Cookie Policy Privacy Policy FAQ Help Contact Us Terms and Conditions

© Irish Examiner Ltd