The Naomh Colmcille GAA club has appealed an eight-week ban from adult competition after being found to have hosted an ‘unauthorised tournament’.
Naomh Colmcille were informed of the sanction last week after the Donegal GAA management committee launched a probe.
This morning’s Inishowen Independent reports that the tournament in question was a fundraiser held in February for Newtowncunningham man Paul Dillon, a former player and coach with the Naomh Colmcille club, who has received a devastating MND diagnosis.
The tournament was part of a large fundraising drive that helped to raise €85,000.
Donegal GAA was alerted to the staging of the tournament, which was played at the second pitch in Pairc Colmcille.
Some executive members met with the club and last week the club was informed of the penalty, which sees all adult members suspended for eight weeks. The club’s senior games in that period would be forfeited.
The club have appealed the penalty, which does not affect the club’s underage teams, and could take the matter all the way to the Central Appeals Committee.
Naomh Colmcille have been penalised under section 6.40 of the GAA’s official guide, which states a fine of €500 and ‘liable to a minimum suspension of 8 weeks’ for what it terms ‘organising an unauthorised tournament’.
The tournament in question was not organised by the Naomh Colmcille club, but by a separate fundraising body in the area.
Donegal Daily/Donegal Sport Hub also understands that the St Eunan’s club in Letterkenny has had to cease the practice of renting their astro turf facility to teams from other sports.
Several clubs had been the new 4G, floodlit astro at O’Donnell Park for training, but were informed two weeks ago that they would no longer be permitted to do so.
It is believed that the threat of expulsion hung over the Letterkenny club, who will now be significantly hit in the pocket following the move.
It is not the first time that a club has had to take such action. A couple of years ago, the Sean MacCumhaills club in Ballybofey was forced into a similar move having rented the astroturf facility to clubs from other codes.
Section 5.1 (b) of the GAA’s official guide states: ‘Grounds controlled by Association units shall not be used or permitted to be used, for Horse Racing, Greyhound Racing, or for Field Games others than those sanctioned by Central Council.’