Integrity of Championship not...


Integrity of Championship not compromised by Sligo's withdrawal | GAA's Feargal McGill

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The GAA's head of games administration Feargal McGill insists that the integrity of this year's All-Ireland Football Championship has not been compromised by Sligo's withdrawal.

A number of positive COVID-19 in the Yeats County's panel forced them to hand a walkover to Galway in the Connacht semi-finals, which sees them exit the Championship without having kicked a ball.

"I don’t think there’s any question about the integrity of the championship,” McGill said of the situation.

“You could be smart and say it was always likely that Galway were going to beat Sligo anyway, they would have been hot favourites for that game, but I don’t think it affects the integrity of the championship, no.

"It was well flagged that this was going to be a possibility. We’re not operating in normal times.”

Two months ago McGill had expressed his belief that it was unlikely that a county will be forced to withdraw due to being unable to fulfil a fixture but he says a lot has changed since.

“I’m not surprised. I’m disappointed. When I would have spoken originally at that conference, none of us knew what the future held. We didn’t know we were going to be in a situation where there would be 1,000 cases a day.

“I think I also said that I thought it was unlikely that we would be playing at all in Level 5. I didn’t think that we’d be permitted to play in Level 5.

"It turned out that we were permitted to play so that was a changing factor. If I’d know we were going to be playing in Level 5 I would have given a different answer at the time but so be it.”

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Covid-19 Feargal McGill GAA Sligo

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