THREE Donegal GAA clubs have won appeals to the Ulster Council over non-fielding in games at the end of June.
On June 28, the morning after Donegal’s Ulster SFC semi-final against Derry in Clones, Gaoth Dobhair, St Michael’s and Glenfin all refused to turn out in All-County League matches which were arranged for that day.
In Division 1 Gaoth Dobhair were pencilled in for an away game at Malin with St Michael’s down for a home game against Naomh Conaill while in Division 2 Glenfin were scheduled to travel Bundoran.
The evening previous, eight Gaoth Dobhair players took to the field in Clones between the senior and minor games. Four St Michael’s players lined out and Glenfin’s Frank McGlynn played the 70 minutes of the senior game.
The Donegal Competitions Controls Committee (CCC) subsequently awarded the points to their opponents and the three clubs were fined €200 for their non-fielding.
The clubs contested that, since they had already played four ‘starred’ fixtures this summer that the CCC was in breach of regulation 21 which states: “In any league campaign there will be a maximum of four designated dates on which a club will be required to play without players who are members of the inter-county panel.”
The three clubs each appealed the decision to the Ulster Hearings Committee and, at a meeting last Wednesday in Armagh, the provincial body overturned the CCC’s decision with the fines rescinded and the fixtures set to be rescheduled.