Hurling title race set to be held up over eligibility of Turloughmore player

Turloughmore's Jamie Holland who is at the centre of a dispute which could hold up the Galway hurling championship.
Turloughmore's Jamie Holland who is at the centre of a dispute which could hold up the Galway hurling championship.

JUST weeks after Galway senior hurlers claimed their first Liam McCarthy Cup win in almost 30 years, the local game could be thrown into disarray if a solution to the current impasse concerning the alleged ineligibility of a Turloughmore player, who featured in their SHC win over Portumna earlier in the Summer, is not found.

The issue has been tossed back and forth between the Galway Competitions Control Committee (CCC) and Connacht Council and the latest turn of events sees Turloughmore appealing Galway’s decision to deduct the championship points from them as this would see them exit the championship and slip into a relegation fight to retain their Senior ‘A’ status.

Turloughmore defeated Portumna 2-17 to 0-18 on June 3, with Jamie Holland coming off the bench for the victors to score four points, two from frees. Unfortunately, Holland’s sanction to play with Chicago club, Cú Chulainns in the United States over the Summer months had already been processed and granted from June 1.

After much discussion at Galway CCC and Connacht Council – and several referrals – it was proposed to impose 12-week bans on the player in question, along with Turloughmore’s club chairman and the secretary, and to deduct the two points from Turloughmore. This would mean Portumna, rather than Turlough’, would progress to the knockout stages.

The matter is expected before a Connacht Council hearing this week but it is generally accepted that, whatever the outcome is to Turloughmore’s appeal, both clubs are willing to take the case all the way to the Dispute Resolution Authority (DRA) which could result in the county final not being played until late November or December – as was the case in 2014.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.