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Dromintee explain why they had players wearing jeans for THAT Armagh club match

Here’s the Dromintee side of a surreal story.

ARMAGH CLUB DROMINTEE have released a statement explaining the circumstances surrounding last Friday’s surreal county championship tie against Crossmaglen Rangers.

Several Dromintee players were unavailable as they were attending the wedding of a teammate. The club had made several attempts to get the game postponed but the match was ordered to go ahead by the Armagh county board.

As a result, veteran Dromintee members lined out but Crossmaglen raced into a 1-7 to 0-0 lead at the Athletic Grounds. At that stage the Crossmaglen management brought their players to the sideline and put them through a training session.

The rest of the game saw the Dromintee players kick the ball amongst themselves as they wound down the clock.

An official statement by Dromintee, reported today by BBC Northern Ireland, illustrates the circumstance surrounding this bizarre game and reveals they had decided two days beforehand not to play.

“After speaking with the club chairman and two other committee members it was agreed the county board should be notified of this. This decision was not taken lightly and was in response to a number of decisions by the Armagh Competitions Control Committee throughout the championship which we deem to have been unfair and disrespectful to Dromintee GAC.”

The Dromintee statement said that earlier in the summer, they had twice agreed to postpone one of their championship matches to accommodate a dual player in the opposition team.

“In the interest of the player and fairness, we were happy to comply despite this resulting in several players having to cancel pre-arranged holidays.

“Our only stipulation was that the eventual fixture would avoid a particular Friday evening so that a number of our younger players could attend an important school function. This request was ultimately ignored by the CCC and we fielded minus three players.

“Having come through our final qualifier last weekend we were then faced with the prospect six days later of a direct clash with a family wedding within the team that included two brothers in the bridal party and nine players most very closely acquainted with the groom and family circle.

“Representations were made to the Armagh CCC after our first-round qualifier to avoid a clash before provisional fixtures were set in stone. Any possible date bar the one chosen would have met our request under both the spirit and rules of the association. No accommodation was made.

“An agreement could not be made with our opposition [Crossmaglen] at that late stage as they had made player travel and holiday arrangements around the original fixture. The rules and guides set out for the CCC in Armagh have been very loosely applied and certainly not to suit Dromintee GAC.

“Like every club team in the country we have spent many months preparing together for this championship campaign, wear the Dromintee jersey with great pride and did not arrive at this decision lightly.

“Having been treated so contemptuously by the Armagh CCC we preferred to support the two central players, fielding would have deprived us. Our progress through the championship has been marked by togetherness and unity and we chose to stand by the same principle we had played with.”

Dromintee called on long-serving members to play as they feared the sanctions that would be handed down to the club if they didn’t fulfill the fixture.

“As a small rural club, and with the restriction of our junior players being unable to play due to next year’s championship commitments, the community rallied so that we would be able to at least field in this fixture.”

McEntee: Dromintee embarrassed themselves and disrespected us

Crossmaglen won Armagh SFC game tonight against team with 3 players wearing jeans

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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