The Galway SHC, which has produced the All-Ireland club champions in 12 of the last 23 years, has been thrown into disarray after one of the quarter-finalists was ejected for fielding an ineligible player.
The Turloughmore club are expected to appeal the decision taken by the GCCC on Thursday night to reverse the outcome of their final pool game against Beagh in a row over a technical breach of the type of transfer used by a hurler who played in the US during the summer.
Beagh asked Galway officials to investigate if Turloughmore, who qualified for the quarter-finals as a result of a 1-19 to 0-16 victory over them last month, fielded an ineligible player.
There were some heated exchanges towards the end of that game which has led to tensions between the clubs.
Turloughmore drew with Ardrahan in their quarter-final last weekend but they have now been thrown out and Beagh have been pencilled in to play Ardrahan next weekend.
But Turloughmore are set to appeal the decision which involves former Galway minor and U21 hurler Matthew Keating, who played in New York during the summer.
Keating, a quality wing-back or midfielder, was granted an inter-county transfer and played for Long Island Gaels in the United States.
The other type of transfer used by players who go to the United States or Canada is known as a sanction and allows them to return and play with their clubs in Ireland. There is a limit on the number of players with sanction which a club in Canada or the United States can use in a game.
Galway hurling chairman Joe Byrne said the development was a big disappointment for all involved but that rules had to be adhered to.
“An investigation was launched following a request by the Beagh club and it was found that the rule book was not adhered to. The rule book is quite clear, if you make an inter-county transfer then you can’t play in two different championships in the same year.
“A player can play here and go for the summer and play in the United States by using what’s known as a sanction but if a player makes an inter-county transfer, which is what happened in this case, then he can’t play here when he returns home that year. It is unfortunate for the player and his club,” said Byrne.
Turloughmore and Ardrahan were due to replay their quarter-final clash today but with Beagh now providing the opposition, the tie has been put back until tomorrow week.
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