The Irish Mail on Sunday
International Rules gets yet another stay of execution
THE International Rules Series is still hanging in the balance after yesterday’s Central Council meeting at Croke Park.
Despite speculation during the week that the future of the hybrid competition was in doubt, with opposition even raised to this year’s one-Test tour to Perth, Paul Earley and his squad are still on course to travel out in November for what has all the looks of a make-or-break trip.
The GAA was keen to see the series continue in its traditional two-match format for the Cormac McAnallen Cup, but Australia’s waning interest was all too obvious in the manner of last year’s record defeat.
An all-indigenous team failed to spark and were wiped by an aggregate total of 101 points.
Ireland’s last tour of Australia took place in 2011 when the visitors won the two tests in Melbourne and the Gold Coast in emphatic fashion.
Central Council will meet next month to specifically deal with part two of the FRC report and its host of recommendations and will discuss the viability of the rules tour.
The key recommendation of rebalancing the provinces into four groups of eight for the football Championship hasn’t been well received around the counties and is hardly likely to get much support. The FRC have plenty of other important recommendations, though, including finishing the club championships in the calendar year, one which has met with plenty of interest. During the week, the Gaelic Players Association released the findings of their own study which also backed that move.