Nugent bemoans handpass plans

Tipperary chairman Sean Nugent has launched a stinging attack on the Football Review Committee ahead of the Premier County’s annual convention this evening.

Nugent praised GAA President Liam O’Neill for instigating the FRC report but insisted that some of the findings presented by the committee, chaired by Eugene McGee, leave a lot to be desired.

Nugent said: “There are some good aspects of the report but also disappointing aspects. They didn’t bite the bullet in regard to the handpass. My contention for the last number of years is that most of the ills affecting Gaelic football are coming from the use and overuse of the handpass. I had hoped that when this review body was put in place, that would be one they would bite the bullet on. They didn’t, and it’s disappointing.”

Nugent added: “You can now handpass a score whereas at the moment there has to be a definite, striking, fisting action. They are promoting the idea that you can handpass it but what is happening is that the ball is being thrown most of the time. And that’s happening so fast and so skilfully, it won’t be detected by the referee.”

Despite the board’s well-documented financial issues, Nugent is determined to press ahead with the continued redevelopment of Dr Morris Park in Thurles. €275,000 has been invested in floodlighting at the training venue and the overall cost of upgrading Dr Morris Park will total €2.5m.

Addressing delegates at last week’s football board convention, Nugent said: “That’s a pretty high price tag and there’s a serious sum of money to be raised. But that’s our challenge and yours. We intend to seek that finance not just here in Tipp but from Tipp people all over the world.”

Financial figures for 2012 will be revealed at convention and while considerable savings have been made, Premier County top brass are bracing for another tough statement.

Tipp reported a deficit of almost €220,000 in 2011, with spending on the preparation of inter-county teams crashing through the €1m barrier for a fourth successive year.


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