No sanction for Dublin's Johnny Small after joining in celebrations

Johnny Small will not face punishment for lifting the Delaney Cup after being sent off last Sunday.

A successful motion at Congress earlier this year meant the Dublin substitute broke no rule in being involved in the team’s official post-match celebrations.

Small was dismissed in the 58th minute after he was deemed to have struck Laois forward Evan O’Carroll. Dublin are now expected to contest the one-match ban incurred by Small.

Up to last year, the rules stated that a player sent off in a final “shall not participate in the After Match Presentation Ceremony” or risk incurring an additional one-match ban.

However, a Down proposal to allow red carded players to be involved in the celebrations was passed by 89% of delegates last February.

Last November, Darryl Flynn was suspended for one game in the Kildare SF championship after he lifted the Dermot Bourke Cup as winning Moorefield captain when they beat Celbridge.

Flynn found himself banned from the opening game of this year’s county SFC.

Whether Dublin were aware of the rule change is not known, but they had earlier on Sunday shown their knowledge of the rulebook in togging out Andy Bunyan instead of Stephen Cluxton, despite the captain being named on Saturday and again the match programme. GAA rules allow teams to make an 11th-hour change if their goalkeeper is unable to play.

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