Wexford forward free for All-Ireland semi-final after appeal over 'abusive language towards referee'

Aidan Nolan was initially handed a two-match ban for the incident.

Nolan receiving a red card from Fergal Horgan after Wexford's draw against Kilkenny.
Nolan receiving a red card from Fergal Horgan after Wexford's draw against Kilkenny.
Image: James Crombie/INPHO

THE WEXFORD HURLERS have received a huge boost ahead of their All-Ireland SHC semi-final following the news that Aidan Nolan has had his two-match ban reduced.

Nolan was ruled out of their incredible Leinster final win over Kilkenny for using ‘abusive language towards a referee’ in their previous round-robin clash with the Cats, which led to a red card.

The Central Hearings Committee [CHC] has since cleared him to be available for Wexford’s All-Ireland semi-final against either Tipperary or Laois on Sunday, 28 July.

“It is the decision of the Central Hearings Committee that the applicable penalty is a One Match Suspension in the same Code and at the same Level, applicable to the next game in the same Competition,” a statement from a CHC hearing reads.

The Central Hearings Committee have decided that an infraction proven against Aidan Nolan committed in the Super 11s Tournament in Fenway Park should not count for the purpose of determining whether a subsequent Infraction is a repeat infraction.”

Nolan was hit with the initial two-match suspension following his side’s draw against Kilkenny in their Leinster SHC round-robin meeting last month.

It’s understood the incident was caused by confusion over injury-time at the end of the game. Nolan, who came on as a substitute for the game at Innovate Wexfrord Park in June, believed that referee Fergal Horgan hadn’t played the full additional time at the end of the match. 

Nolan didn’t realise that a draw was enough to ensure Wexford’s progression and confronted Horgan about the added time after the final whistle. 

He was dismissed at the time and failed to get his red card rescinded by the CHC.

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But the verdict at a separate hearing determines that Nolan is free to play the crucial last-four tie later this month where Davy Fitzgerald’s side are looking to progress to their first All-Ireland final since 1996.

Tipperary and Laois will square off for the other spot in that All-Ireland semi-final when they meet in Croke Park this Sunday [throw-in, 4pm].

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