Wick­low in hot wa­ter over in­el­i­gi­ble player

Fur­long lined out in Antrim af­ter be­ing sent off in O’Byrne Cup

Bray People - - Sports - Mark KENNEDY

WICK­LOW G.A.A. will be keep­ing fin­gers crossed that they will not be pun­ished for play­ing Seánie Fur­long in their open­ing league game against Antrim two weeks ago.

The Kil­te­gan man had picked up a straight red card two weeks ear­lier in their fi­nal O’Byrne Cup game where they were de­feated by Louth in Drogheda.

Ap­par­ently Wick­low were ei­ther in­formed or un­der the im­pres­sion that an O’Byrne Cup red card send­ing off did not carry over to the league and would only click in for the 2010 O’Byrne Cup.

Seánie Fur­long, who is Wick­low’s top for­ward at the mo­ment, tore the Antrim de­fence apart in the league match two weeks ago, par­tic­u­larly in the sec­ond-half and his two goals were the key to the Gar­den county se­cur­ing a vi­tal draw with the Saf­frons.

On Satur­day last it tran­spired that Wick­low may have erred in play­ing Fur­long in the league opener and con­se­quently he sat out the sec­ond round game and draw with Water­ford at Aughrim at the week­end.

The mat­ter is due to come be­fore Croke Park’s Com­pe­ti­tions Con­trol Com­mit­tee when it meets and it is hoped that Wick­low will not be pun­ished for what at worst was faulty ad­vice or a de­ci­sion made in good faith.

Else­where, Wick­low G.A.A. will be hop­ing that na­tional me­dia re­ports that they are in dan­ger of los­ing the spon­sor­ship of Bal­ly­more Prop­er­ties do not prove cor­rect.

Seán Mul­ryan, the owner of Bal­ly­more Prop­er­ties who lives in West Wick­low, and his com­pany came on board with spon­sor­ship over two years ago to co­in­cide with the ar­rival of Mick O’Dwyer as man­ager of the county foot­ball team.

Mul­ryan, whose build­ing em­pire now ex­tends be­yond Ire­land’s shores, has al­ready ended a decade-long back­ing of his na­tive Roscom­mon and this has fu­elled spec­u­la­tion that spon­sor­ship of Wick­low could also be ter­mi­nated as the eco­nomic down­turn con­tin­ues to im­pact se­verely on the prop­erty mar­ket.

Un­con­firmed re­ports say that Bal­ly­more’s spon­sor­ship of Wick­low foot­ball runs into sev­eral tens of thou­sands of euro and its loss would be a se­vere blow.

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