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Dublin boss doesn't agree with talk of a diving epidemic in Gaelic football

Dublin’s boss is happy with the effect of the black card.

Tiernan McCann is shown a black card by referee Marty Duffy.
Tiernan McCann is shown a black card by referee Marty Duffy.
Image: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

THERE’S BEEN A plea to fix Gaelic football in the wake of the closing chaos for Tyrone and Monaghan’s All-Ireland quarter-final.

But one recent All-Ireland winning manager doesn’t buy this talk of a diving epidemic in the sport and suggests that the black card is working to improve matters.

Dublin boss Jim Gavin has long been an advocate of the sin bin but gives a thumbs up to the black card.

“I don’t think it’s a (diving) epidemic, no. I think the officials, I can see the standards increasing every year with them.

“From players and from managers and supporters and people who follow the game, they just want consistency and I think we’re getting there.

“Referees are volunteers like the rest of us so they’re doing their very best and that’s all we ask them to do.

“The player (Tiernan McCann) made a mistake, I’m sure he realises that as well and I’m sure he’ll play against Kerry.

Tiernan McCann Tyrone's Tiernan McCann Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

“I would have been always in favour of the sin bin but it didn’t get there.

“It (black card) was purposely brought in for the body collisions, trips and that part of our game is beginning to be eradicated.

“So I think we’re seeing less and less of it and it’s going in the right direction.

But are players likely to be willing to receive a black card as they try to shut down a game in the last ten minutes?

“Have you seen that many black cards in the last 10 minutes of games?”, queries Gavin.

“I don’t have the stats now myself but it doesn’t appear to me. We saw it in the hurling over the weekend.

Jim Gavin with Adam Goldrick-McCann and Grace Goldrick-McCann Dublin manager Jim Gavin launched AIG Insurance’s new offer of up to 47%* off home insurance. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

“That’s why I think the sin bin is more punitive. Bit I think it was a positive step to bring in the (black card) rule which would try and curb that type of play.

“I think it’ll progress naturally over the coming years.”

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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