Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Football: Weather Rains on the GAA's Parade; OFFICIALS REARRANGE POSTPONED NFL MATCHES FIXTURE CHAOS OVER SUNDAY CALL-OFFS

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Football: Weather Rains on the GAA's Parade; OFFICIALS REARRANGE POSTPONED NFL MATCHES FIXTURE CHAOS OVER SUNDAY CALL-OFFS

Article excerpt

Byline: Orla Bannon

A FEW puddles of rain in Crossmaglen and Newry has led to major disruption for 16 teams and wreaked havoc with club fixtures in all of those counties.

The last round of games in Division Two and three of the Allianz NFL were yesterday pushed back a week to April 20 in order to accommodate the outstanding league ties involving Armagh v Dublin and Down v Limerick.

The CCCC yesterday decided to refix the Armagh v Dublin league game for Sunday April 13 and not next Wednesday night as originally proposed in the wake of Sunday's controversial postponement in Crossmaglen.

Dublin made it known to the GAA's fixture-makers that they had no appetite for the chaotic midweek trip to Armagh, especially for a 6.30 throw-in which would have been unfair on players and supporters.

That left the CCCC with limited options.

In order to guarantee no team had an unfair advantage heading into the last round of games, the CCCC had to make sure that all those fixtures in the divisions affected go ahead at the same time.

The new schedule also avoids the unwanted scenario of Armagh and Dublin playing their three remaining Division Two matches in the space of eight days.

However the ramifications of the decision go far and wide as the division two league final may now be postponed until May 3.

The consequences of Cork's dispute earlier in the season are still being felt as scoring difference cannot be used in division two of the NFL because Dublin and Meath did not have to play the Rebels.

Play-offs may well have to determine the promotion and relegation issues in that division so Sunday April 27, the day designated for the football league finals in all four divisions, could now be play-off day in division two.

In a statement last night the CCCC confirmed: "The finals in divisions 1, 2, 3 and 4 will go ahead as scheduled on April 27 unless there is a need for a play-off in division two in accordance with Riail 116 (c) of the Official Guide". …

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