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'Black card rule would work but it's the Sin Bin for me' - Gavin

The Dublin boss says the GAA could’ve gone slightly harder with their latest rule change.

Gavin.
Gavin.
Image: INPHO/Donall Farmer

DUBLIN MANAGER JIM GAVIN has backed the GAA’s new ‘black card’ but says the reintroduction of the Sin Bin would be a more effective system.

The GAA announced on Tuesday that it is considering a move to introduce the new rule under the amended proposals published by the Football Review Committee (FRC), in the aim of “ reducing deliberate and cynical fouling and also to increase respect towards referees and fellow players”.

It would see teams forced to substitute the guilty player, who would then be prevented from returning to the field of play during the game in question.

And while Gavin believes it is a step in the right direction, he says that harsher measures need to be taken.

“I met Eugene McGee over the Christmas break,” Gavin said after Dublin’s O’Byrne Cup win over UCD on Wednesday. “We had a chat, just wanted to see what his opinion was on the FRC, what the logic behind it was. I broadly endorse their recommendations, they’ve put a lot of hard work into it.

I would like to see the Sin Bin coming back in, if I’m honest about it. I think it’s about the most punitive measure. You could see it there tonight, there was some, I wouldn’t say wild tackling but some pretty negative, dragging players down, the only way you can punish that is to get a guy off the pitch, and not replace him.

“I don’t think what they’re proposing is harsh enough. I said that to Eugene but I know where he’s coming from. It’s trying to manage the Sin Bin at club level because you need to balance everything up with the grass roots. I think their suggestions broadly are very good.

“The advantage rule we saw there today could have been played on but the referee is hamstrung. If he plays it on and there’s not a positive outcome, it’s just play continues whereas the FRC’s recommendation that there’s a five-second period where a referee can play advantage or see how it runs its course, and if it’s not to the advantage of the player fouled then it’s a free kick, they’ve lots of good ideas.

“I think the theme of their work was to cut out cynical play and give back respect to referees and I couldn’t but endorse all of that.”

The Sin Bin has been tested in different forms on two occasions in the past (2005 and 2008) but both times it wasn’t passed into law. Gavin, however, would like to see it back for a third stint.

“It’s the Sin Bin for me. In ‘05 and ‘09, managers kicked up and that’s why it wasn’t ran with. But I would certainly promote the Sin Bin. I think it’s the most punitive measure you can have. If teams are prepared to put players down, there’s only one way you can punish it – get the guy off.

It (the black card) will work. The theme of their recommendations are all to remove the cynical aspect of the game. But if you’re asking me is it the most effective method, I think that is the Sin Bin.”

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Ben Blake

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