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GAA Congress 2024

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Replying To CTGAA10:  "I'm putting this subject on here..I've watched a lot of hurling over the last few weeks and I just can't figure out what rules the refs are implementing..the weekend just gone really baffled..Saturday night lim/tipp,ref seemed to ignore the steps rule on both sides..a blatant push on jake morris which I think limerick scored from.gillane tripped inside 14 no penalty or black card..the holding of the free hand for players completely ignored..Maher got a yellow for what I thought was a shoulder charge,but I heard a lot saying it wasn't even a free..yesterday round 50 frees in 70 mins in Ennis..I really couldn't work out a lot of them at all,diving now seems to win frees for any team..Hutchinson getting away with a punch to a Wexford player but again rules seemed completely different in this match..Johnny Murphy getting criticised for giving reds yet I thought 3 of them were fully deserved..he was informed by umpires and linesmen so it wasn't all his decisions..refs having to retire at 50 when very capable and some of the better ones..croke park seem more interested in bleep test being passed than anything on rules..I'd like to get others opinions on these matters..I'm not going to mention football.."
This won't directly address the different refereeing approaches or performances in the three games on Sunday, but something that I've often thought in general, and it applies equally as much in football as it does in hurling -

- Referees are often praised for doing a good job when what they've actually done is a bad job, as in a bad job of actually applying the rules as set out in the Rule Book. They're praised for "letting the game flow", "showing common sense", and "not blowing up for every little thing". However, if a ref takes a "let the game flow" approach, it's inevitable that some of the things he lets go are worse than he realises at the time, and then he ends up being criticised anyway.

- If a referee does a good job, as in a good job of actually applying the Rule Book, then they're usually criticised. "Whistle-happy". "Ruined the game with too many frees". "Trying to make a name for himself". "Loves being the centre of attention".

Logically then, the problem is with the Rule Book - but what rules could you actually remove? And not straightforward either to just re-write them so that they become "looser", because then there's a risk of making it far easier to win an appeal on a technicality if you've been sent off for something that most would agree did actually deserve a red card.

It's a real Catch 22.

Pikeman96 (Wexford) - Posts: 2210 - 12/03/2024 09:24:44    2530843

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Replying To Pikeman96:  "This won't directly address the different refereeing approaches or performances in the three games on Sunday, but something that I've often thought in general, and it applies equally as much in football as it does in hurling -

- Referees are often praised for doing a good job when what they've actually done is a bad job, as in a bad job of actually applying the rules as set out in the Rule Book. They're praised for "letting the game flow", "showing common sense", and "not blowing up for every little thing". However, if a ref takes a "let the game flow" approach, it's inevitable that some of the things he lets go are worse than he realises at the time, and then he ends up being criticised anyway.

- If a referee does a good job, as in a good job of actually applying the Rule Book, then they're usually criticised. "Whistle-happy". "Ruined the game with too many frees". "Trying to make a name for himself". "Loves being the centre of attention".

Logically then, the problem is with the Rule Book - but what rules could you actually remove? And not straightforward either to just re-write them so that they become "looser", because then there's a risk of making it far easier to win an appeal on a technicality if you've been sent off for something that most would agree did actually deserve a red card.

It's a real Catch 22."
Good post.
Hurling Refs seem to think their job is to throw in the ball to start the game and keep the score.

But in the meantime can they blow up the 40 blatant throws per game pleeease?

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1367 - 12/03/2024 10:22:26    2530852

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Replying To Seanfanbocht:  "Good post.
Hurling Refs seem to think their job is to throw in the ball to start the game and keep the score.

But in the meantime can they blow up the 40 blatant throws per game pleeease?"
Exactly the point.

Let the game flow, and they're not applying the rules, which is surely a referee's job in the first place.

But apply the rules properly by blowing up every handpass where there's not a definite release of the ball and striking action with the hand, as required by Rule, and they'd be accused of ruining the game.

Pikeman96 (Wexford) - Posts: 2210 - 12/03/2024 11:12:21    2530870

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Replying To Pikeman96:  "Exactly the point.

Let the game flow, and they're not applying the rules, which is surely a referee's job in the first place.

But apply the rules properly by blowing up every handpass where there's not a definite release of the ball and striking action with the hand, as required by Rule, and they'd be accused of ruining the game."
Constant throwing is ruining the game

Seanfanbocht (Roscommon) - Posts: 1367 - 12/03/2024 12:37:16    2530887

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Replying To Seanfanbocht:  "
Replying To Pikeman96:  "Exactly the point.

Let the game flow, and they're not applying the rules, which is surely a referee's job in the first place.

But apply the rules properly by blowing up every handpass where there's not a definite release of the ball and striking action with the hand, as required by Rule, and they'd be accused of ruining the game."
Constant throwing is ruining the game"
I don't disagree. Am just making the point that if referees across the board were instructed to crack down on it by blowing every single time there's not a clear and obvious release of the ball and strike with the hand, then they're the ones who'd be accused of ruining the game.

Maybe it's time to consider biting the bullet and just allowing throw passes, or at least underarm ones. But that's a whole different issue, for a different day.

Pikeman96 (Wexford) - Posts: 2210 - 12/03/2024 13:10:50    2530897

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Replying To Seanfanbocht:  "
Replying To Pikeman96:  "Exactly the point.

Let the game flow, and they're not applying the rules, which is surely a referee's job in the first place.

But apply the rules properly by blowing up every handpass where there's not a definite release of the ball and striking action with the hand, as required by Rule, and they'd be accused of ruining the game."
Constant throwing is ruining the game"
The most successful teams are the biggest culprits in this regard. In the lower levels of Hurling there is far less throwing.It seems that refs at the elite level ignore it and that refs at the lower levels are far stricter on it.It definitely takes away from the look of the game.

gunman (Donegal) - Posts: 1054 - 12/03/2024 13:42:06    2530904

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Replying To Pikeman96:  "Exactly the point.

Let the game flow, and they're not applying the rules, which is surely a referee's job in the first place.

But apply the rules properly by blowing up every handpass where there's not a definite release of the ball and striking action with the hand, as required by Rule, and they'd be accused of ruining the game."
That's it. And if the distinction between a throw and a legitimate pass is so obscure and hard to detect, then what difference does it make?

Anyone watching a lot of hurling would see far more pressing issues. One that strikes me is that with the higher levels of physical conditioning and the emphasis on sheer power backed by on average huge men is that the game is becoming more of a head on - literally - physical battle,

Anything including nit picking over a transgression which will slow the game down and shift the emphasis more to that aspect will do more harm than good, So leave well enough alone I'd say and crack down on the head shots which are an actual danger, and most of them are not intended to be dirty.

BarneyGrant (Dublin) - Posts: 2506 - 13/03/2024 08:48:53    2530986

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Replying To Seanfanbocht:  "
Replying To Pikeman96:  "Exactly the point.

Let the game flow, and they're not applying the rules, which is surely a referee's job in the first place.

But apply the rules properly by blowing up every handpass where there's not a definite release of the ball and striking action with the hand, as required by Rule, and they'd be accused of ruining the game."
Constant throwing is ruining the game"
I fully agree - throwing is a blight that needs to be removed - it's like allowing widespread breaches of red traffic lights. I'd be very much in favour of a ref crackdown on 'doubtful' striking actions - only allowing a tap or solo off the hurl, prior to a clear palm follow through, might be the solution.

Likewise in football - there are clear striking fist actions and some others which look like pushing the ball by one hand off the other. Maybe a 30cm withdrawal of the striking hand may be a useful rule in both codes.

Finally, the football pick up - another blight - should it be allowed like in Ladies football? - or should there be a similar minimum 30cm of daylight between ball and turf for a pluck of the ball to be legitimate?

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2565 - 17/03/2024 16:53:14    2531702

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Imagine asking a referee to judge 30cm during a game?? What's next? How does the current pick up represent a blight on the game? There's skill involved, courage, using both feet, there's virtually zero skill in the ladies' version

Claretandblue (Westmeath) - Posts: 1473 - 18/03/2024 20:11:21    2531996

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Replying To Claretandblue:  "Imagine asking a referee to judge 30cm during a game?? What's next? How does the current pick up represent a blight on the game? There's skill involved, courage, using both feet, there's virtually zero skill in the ladies' version"
30cm would be an estimate like the 20 metres pass for the mark - just a benchmark to suggest legal execution.

Football has too many pick ups - I don't deny there is skill in getting one's toe under the ball - I'm talking about too many illegal pick ups - as bad as hurling throws.

omahant (USA) - Posts: 2565 - 23/03/2024 20:48:39    2532932

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I'd estimate 1-2 illegal pickups per game, max, hardly represents a blight on our game

Claretandblue (Westmeath) - Posts: 1473 - 24/03/2024 05:24:43    2532965

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