Sin bin among three rule changes passed at GAA Special Congress

The 10-minute sin bin (73.8% backing), the advanced mark (68.9%) and all kick-outs being taken from the 20-metre line (83.1%) were given the green light.

Sin bin among three rule changes passed at GAA Special Congress

All three playing rule changes in Gaelic football were strongly supported at Special Congress in Páirc Uí Chaoimh this afternoon.

The 10-minute sin bin (73.8% backing), the advanced mark (68.9%) and all kick-outs being taken from the 20-metre line (83.1%) were given the green light.

From next month (four weeks’ time) for any competitions that haven’t already started, any footballer who is issued with a black card will be dismissed for 10 minutes and not replaced.

It also means the maximum number of substitutes will return to five from six.

Antrim raised the issue of teams who go down to 14 men trying to kill the clock as they are numerically disadvantaged - it was confirmed that the 10 minutes will not consider delays.

The same point was raised by former Roscommon footballer Paul Earley this past week but playing rules committee chairman David Hassan insisted there was no evidence to support this concern.

The advanced mark was also endorsed. It proposes that the mark be extended to forwards or defenders inside the 45-metre line making clean catches from kicks outside the 45m and the kick being of 20m or more in length. Players who choose to take the kick must signal with their hand that they wish to do so and now have 15 seconds instead of the previous recommended five to take it.

Westmeath’s Pat Doherty, the former GAA match officials manager, had argued that the new rule was a “piecemeal” proposal and would make life more difficult for referees who are already under enough pressure as it is.

Concluding a surprisingly swift Special Congress, delegates overwhelmingly backed all kick-outs being taken from the 20m line.

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