Cusack questions implementation of handpass rule

July 09, 2024

Referee Thomas Walsh disallows a goal. ©INPHO/Ryan Byrne.

Donal Óg Cusack believes Cork were denied a perfectly good goal in last Sunday’s epic win over Limerick because of a refereeing error relating to the handpass rule.

Referee Thomas Walsh controversially disallowed a Brian Hayes goal in the first half after deeming Alan Connolly’s handpass to be illegal, while Limerick’s Aaron Gillane and Cork substitute Ethan Twomey were also harshly blown up for what looked to be legitimate handpasses.

“A lot of people have been talking about it,” the former Cork goalkeeper said on The Sunday Game.

"You would wonder, with some of the new proposals, how the ball is going to be handpassed or the proposal to be handpassed; you can see that Gillane had clear separation.

“For the disallowed goal, it was a brilliant piece of skill from Connolly. What do you expect him to do there? Stop and kick it? Do we want more kicking in the game? We saw a lot of those over the weekend, and it would make you wonder where that noise is coming from into the referee’s ears when they make decisions like this.

“You would wonder, in terms of the people making these decisions, look at the way it evolved over the years. Cathal O’Neill was able to keep the flow going through the evolution of the modern handpass.

“Before any decision or any thought of a decision around the handpass, you need to get the top, top players involved. You need to acknowledge their skill set and the positive impact of the hand-passes evolution on our game."

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