Davy Fitz on Nowlan Park pitch invasion: 'I won't do it again, if that's any consolation'

The Wexford manager is facing an eight-week suspension, and may not be free to patrol the touchline in a potential Leinster semi-final with Kilkenny on 10 June.

Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Updated at 14:00

DAVY FITZGERALD IS in line for an eight-week ban following his Nowlan Park pitch invasion. 

Fitzgerald grabbed the headlines when he stormed onto the turf to remonstrate with referee Diarmuid Kirwan following Tipperary’s second goal.

The Wexford manager clashed with Tipp players Niall O’Meara and Jason Forde before leaving the field of play.

And it now seems that Fitzgerald will be suspended from touchline duties when Wexford play a round-robin qualifier in the Leinster senior hurling quarter-final on 27/28 May.

He could also be forced to sit in the stands if the Slaneysiders are pitted with Kilkenny in a provincial semi-final on 10 June.

If an eight-week suspension is handed down, it would expire at midnight on that Saturday, thereby ruling Fitzgerald out.

Referee Diarmuid Kirwan is sure to make note of the episode in his official match report and in the GAA’s Official Guide, the minimum suspension for an offence of Fitzgerald’s nature is an eight-week ban (see pages 129/130).

Chapter 7 deals with enforcement of rules/arbitration and under the heading ‘misconduct at games by team officials’,  Category IIa covers ‘any type of physical interference with an opposing player or team official.’

Davy Fitzgerald clashes with Jason Forde Davy Fitzgerald squares up to Tipperary's Jason Forde. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The penalty for this is a minimum eight-week suspension and Fitzgerald may have to sit it out for Wexford’s first two championship games.

Speaking to reporters after the yesterday’s game, Fitzgerald said: “I won’t do it again, if that’s any consolation. Whatever it is, it is. Don’t dwell on that tomorrow, if you’ve to mention it do, but I think  the game deserves it, the Wexford boys worked extremely hard.”

And Fitzgerald said that he wanted to draw a response from his players with his actions, after Wexford had fallen 0-2 to 2-2 behind following Noel McGrath’s goal.

I was hoping they might respond a small bit more. They responded after that, which was no harm, with a bit of fight. Let me make this clear, I could not blame Diarmuid Kirwan.

“I thought he was very good, very fair. He’s one of the top referees. I will not criticise him. In a game you’re going to get one or two things either way. But just unfortunately, that one hurt us at the time. But we’re not going to be complaining in Wexford. 100 per cent not.”

But Fitzgerald doesn’t believe that his actions will result in a touchline ban.

He added: “I don’t think they’d do that to me. It would be no fun if I was up there. You’d have nothing to f***ing write about if I’m up there!”

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