Carrick Swans have vowed to only relinquish their South Senior Hurling Championship on the playing field, after the South Tipp GAA Board proposed that the title holders would be thrown out of the championship for refusing to play their semi-final replay against Mullinahone, scheduled for last Sunday night.
The club also face expulsion from the County Senior Championship Hurling Championship and a fine of €3,000 over their failure to fulfil the fixture, which they say occurred because they had 9 players unavailable.
The dramatic events of the past week have not only plunged the South Senior Hurling Championship into turmoil but also appear to have scuppered the widely-anticipated prospect of an all-Carrick final against their neighbours and arch-rivals Davins.
Mullinahone have been awarded the match against Swans and their South Final against Davins is scheduled for Clonmel at 3pm next Sunday, 31st, although it remains to be seen if the game will go ahead.
South Board Secretary Noel Byrne said on Monday that a meeting of the Board’s CCC (Competitions Control Committee) had been held after the Mullinahone/Swans replay was due to be played on Sunday night, and the committee had dealt with the matter accordingly.
Carrick Swans PRO Sean McDonnell confirmed that the club would seek a hearing on the decision from the County Board’s Hearings Committee, and if necessary make a further appeal to Munster Council.
“We’re the proud holders of 22 South Senior Hurling titles and have never found ourselves in such a situation. We’ll only relinquish our South Senior Hurling Championship on the playing field”, he stated.
After they drew with Mullinahone in the semi-final, Sean McDonnell said the club had immediately made the South Board aware of their difficulty in fulfilling the fixture on the proposed date.
This was because they knew they would have 9 players unavailable for a variety of reasons including illness, injury, work commitments and holidays.
They had offered to play the game on any date from this Thursday to next Monday, although the club accepts that this would have prevented the South Final from being played next Sunday. They had also offered to enter the County Senior Hurling Championship at the second round phase and conclude the South Championship at a later stage. They had informed the Board on Thursday evening that they wouldn’t fulfil Sunday night’s fixture.
The club PRO said the South Final had been played on August 20 last year and he couldn’t understand the rush to have it played so early this year.
He said Carrick Swans worked hard to promote Gaelic Games among all age groups. “Our club caters for 250 boys and girls from 5 to 16 years of age in our juvenile section, and fields teams in all hurling and football competitions from minor to senior grade That will tell you what this GAA club is all about”, he stated.
He added that their U-8, U-10, U-12, U-14, U-16 and Minor Hurling teams had all been in action in the past week.