Dublin management consider appeal after crucial Ladies final error

Only one point separated the teams at the final whistle
Only one point separated the teams at the final whistle

Dublin manager Gregory McGonigle has confirmed that the Sky Blues will consider an appeal after Carla Rowe had a legitimate first half point disallowed in Sunday afternoon’s TG4 All-Ireland ladies senior football final against Cork.

Dublin’s sense of grievance was obvious at full-time as just a point separated the sides – Cork winning a low-scoring encounter by 1-7 to 1-6.

While McGonigle was exploring the avenue of appeal with Dublin Ladies Gaelic top brass, a Ladies Gaelic Football Association spokesperson admitted that any request is unlikely to succeed.

The spokesperson explained that using HawkEye for Ladies football championship games was discussed at Central Council level earlier this year – but it was decided not to.

He said: “It went in front of Central Council, whether or not to use HawkEye, earlier on this year.

“The decision was taken that in order to have a level playing field for all teams playing on all fields throughout the country, throughout the championship, that we wouldn’t use HawkEye.”

LGFA President Marie Hickey explained before last year’s final that HawkEye wouldn’t be commissioned – partly due to associated costs.

There are also logistical issues around using the score technology, as the system would need recalibrating due to the fact that the size 4 football is a size down from the football in use for men’s fixtures.

And when asked if Dublin have a case for a replay, the spokesperson replied: “I don’t have a rulebook in front of me but I would think no.”

Shortly after the full-time whistle, a visibly emotional McGonigle told reporters: “You obviously don’t want to come in here making excuses for why we lost the game. Obviously, there are factors. Possibly, a big one was our conversion rate of missed chances in the first half.

“But what I would say here is we preach all year about having equality and standards. If this happened next Saturday, we would be going to HawkEye.

“If you take down the posters of Sinead Goldrick and Briege Corkery and the other girls plastered around Ireland... if there was €1.5 million put into our association and if it cost €10,000 for HawkEye…you guys are the journalists.

“You know better than I do (that) if we are actually serious about ladies sports or do we just say ‘we do what we can do and if it costs us a wee bit extra money we don’t want to do it’.

“Fundamentally, I believe our ladies association have let us down.”

An irate McGonigle, who suffered his fifth All-Ireland final defeat as a manager today, added that he could not understand why HawkEye was not in use.

He said: “We just sort of talked about it inside there as a management.

“I think I saw something last year that it was too much money and if that’s what it comes down to I don’t think we’re definitely skint.

“Put it on the flip-side, 45 to maybe 60 officials spent a week in San Diego in the earlier part of the year. What do you think would be more important?
“I just talked to our administrator Patricia Monahan and we’ll obviously have a quick chat this evening. Again, this is not to take away from Cork.

“If there is a right there then I do believe we should be offered a replay. There’s possibly a loophole where there mightn’t be a replay.”