Leinster says Yes

Kildare and Offaly have joined the other 10 Leinster counties in giving their approval to temporarily opening up Croke Park to rugby and “soccer” while Lansdowne Rd. is being rebuilt. So far only Cork and six Ulster counties have voted against amending Rule 42. Down will decide next Wednesday. It certainly appears the momentum is in favour of those advocating allowing the temporary use of the stadium.

  • smcgiff

    Donegal have also entered the 21st Century.

  • PS

    It’s going to be a very close run thing for the in favour of relaxing the ban to get a two thirds majority. I’m still very hopeful the rule will be retained.

  • Inishowen

    It looks now as if the reformers already have over 50% plus 1 of the delegates. This is all that would be required for a temporary change in the rules while Lansdowne Road is being redeveloped. With a number of counties still to decide it could still be possible to get the 2/3 required to make a permanent change but i think they’ll go for the compromise to keep the 6 county dinosaurs happy.

  • GavBelfast

    Retained but with a temporary dispenation, PS, or for all time?

    I must say that, if the latter, that seems remarkably small minded of you in relation to other Irish representative teams, their supporters and Republic’s economy.

  • Donnie

    The word “temporary” is important. I would be okay with a temporary change whilst rugby and soccer pull the finger out. I don’t think a permanent change will happen any time soon though.

  • Sam Maguire

    Where did you get that idea Inishowen? It still needs 2/3 majority to let central council make the decision as it sees fit on whether ot not it can be opened on a temporary basis.

    I must admit I find it slightly ironic though that Down voted to abolish Rule 21 but are voting to keep rule 42, when Rule 21 was a clearly more (still is) contentious issue

  • George

    Personally, I think the only motion that will have success is to open Croker temporarily while Lansdowne Road is rebuilt.

    The GAA knows it would have a lot to answer for if the Irish rugby and football teams had to play their matches abroad in that time and many GAA members don’t want to be seen as the people who made this happen.

  • PS

    I must say that, if the latter, that seems remarkably small minded of you in relation to other Irish representative teams, their supporters and Republic’s economy.

    Gav, I have two major problems. Firstly I don’t believe that temporary does mean temporary and that once the rule is bent it will soon be done away with entirely. Secondly and to me more importantly, the FAI’s atitude to all this has been a disgrace. They seem perfectly happy to let the media be their cheerleaders. The FAI have NOT asked the GAA for the use of the stadium, they have NOT put forward proposals that members can study as to how much rent they would be willing to pay or how often they would need the stadium. They are hiding their incompetence behind a flurry of media criticism towards the GAA.

    I do not want to see Irish rugby and soccer teams playing abroad, however I also do not want to see Croke Park be used as a pawn in a media onslught against the GAA. My main fear is that, however many assurances we receive, when the chips are down it is the GAA who will suffer. Say Ireland are down to play on the same weekend as semi-final replay or similar event. WHo has to compromise? If the Croke Park residents continue their complaints whose games are deemed the more important? Croke Park was built for the GAA by the GAA and it is the needs of the GAA which must be paramount in this arguement.

  • maca

    This is what I reckon the current situation is:

    Connaught
    * Galway – IN FAVOUR
    * Leitrim – YET TO VOTE
    * Mayo – YET TO VOTE
    * Roscommon – IN FAVOUR
    * Sligo – IN FAVOUR

    Leinster
    * Carlow – IN FAVOUR
    * Dublin – IN FAVOUR
    * Kildare – IN FAVOUR
    * Kilkenny – IN FAVOUR
    * Laois – IN FAVOUR
    * Longford – IN FAVOUR
    * Louth – IN FAVOUR
    * Meath – IN FAVOUR
    * Offaly – IN FAVOUR
    * Westmeath – IN FAVOUR
    * Wexford – IN FAVOUR
    * Wicklow – IN FAVOUR

    Munster
    * Clare – IN FAVOUR
    * Cork – OPPOSED
    * Kerry – IN FAVOUR
    * Limerick – YET TO VOTE
    * Tipperary – IN FAVOUR
    * Waterford – IN FAVOUR

    Ulster
    * Antrim – OPPOSED
    * Armagh – OPPOSED
    * Cavan – IN FAVOUR
    * Derry – OPPOSED
    * Donegal – IN FAVOUR
    * Down – YET TO VOTE
    * Fermanagh – OPPOSED
    * Monaghan – OPPOSED
    * Tyrone – OPPOSED

    21 For, 7 against, 4 yet to vote

    Meath is one of the more important counties to add their vote (yesterday) AFAIK.

  • Lafcadio

    maca – that’s an interesting breakdown, what way do you see the “YET TO VOTE”s going? Also, how does this work, are the counties voting to have a vote on this at Congress?

  • PS

    There will definitely be a vote on congress as various counties have submitted motions on this issues. The vote will be from delegates from each county and in addition to the counties maca mentioned, there will also be delegates from the overseas parts of the association while past presidents and the management committe of the GAA are also eligible to vote.

  • maca

    Lafcadio, i’m not that in tune with it really to know how the 4 “not yet voted” might vote but I got this from one website

    Cty: Vote from 2001 – Prediction
    Leitrim: For – Prediction For
    Mayo: For – Prediction Split
    Limerick: For – Prediction Against
    Down: Against – Prediction Against

    …feckin security code, keep forgetting it

  • GavBelfast

    PS, none of these organisations are anything without their supporters. Think of them, eh?

    It is primarily the supporters who will suffer if the Irish representative teams have to play in GB. How on earth could the GAA live with this? I really don’t think they could ever live it down (though they would have brought it on themselves).

    The voting really does look awfully partitionist – 5 out of 5 for ostrich mentality North of the border at this point!

  • maca

    “The voting really does look awfully partitionist – 5 out of 5 for ostrich mentality North of the border at this point!”

    It’s what we always said, GAA in NI is very different from everywhere else.

    I can understand the attitude (to a certain degree) up North as Southern clubs have never faced the abuse which *some* Northern clubs have.

  • George

    Gav,
    I think it’s actually the blazers in the FAI and to a much, much lesser extent the IRFU to blame.

    The GAA doesn’t need to open its stadium. It has a debt of 36 million euros, will be debt-free in five years and it still has 90% of its renewed 10-year corporate leases to add to its books.

    The residents only agreed to a certain number of games a year so I can’t imagine it can be a long-term home for football and rugby.

  • Davros

    This reminds me of the fuss and bother about the Orange order and the Unionist party LOL

  • Billy Pilgrim

    It looks like the wind is changing, and that’s something I warmly welcome. (As someone who was against change four years ago, but has changed his mind.)

    There is, of course, always the wildcard of the renegade delegate. Even if all the counties mandated their delegates to vote for change, you could still find things getting ugly on the floor of Congress.

    Remember, change was only averted by a single vote last time – and half the Limerick delegates broke ranks and voted against their mandate and against change! It was a shocking abuse but, constitutionally, they were within their rights.

    However I understand that a whole swathe of county boards have organised whipping systems since that debacle. It still might come up though – GAA county boards seem to be lightning rods for would-be gombeen politicians.

  • PatMcLarnon

    While I would welcome wholeheartedly the decision to allow rugby and soccer to be played at Croker, one has to ask how the IRFU and the FAI allowed themselves to be put in a position where the only facility open to them for decades was the antiquated Lansdowne Rd.
    Money has been flooding into those two associations for quite some time, where did it all go?

  • Keith M

    Personally I would prefer to see the GAA reject the motion as (1) it would show what a self-centred organisation the it is and (2) as a local resident I already have to put up with enough traffic congestion and the sheer bedlam that’s created with hurling and gaelic fotball matches.

    It’s interesting to see the counties from Northern Ireland. It seems the dog in the manger attitude is still alive and well up there.

    Pat McL “While I would welcome wholeheartedly the decision to allow rugby and soccer to be played at Croker, one has to ask how the IRFU and the FAI allowed themselves to be put in a position where the only facility open to them for decades was the antiquated Lansdowne Rd.” Google “Eircom Park” I couldn’t be arsed going throught the whole sorry mess.

  • Ringo

    Billy,

    what about the delegate who ‘missed’ the vote because he was in the toilet at the time when he was mandated to vot eto open up? Is this an urban legend or is he one one the limerick lads?

    Pat –

    The IRFU are running 5 professional teams with some success, and appear to be managing to spread the game to places where it previously was non-existant. And in fairness they were fucked over by both the government and the FAI regards Eircom Pk & the Bertie Bowl.

    The FAI, well, its time to throw out that Muppets word again…

    Anyone have any confirmation that Kerry are in the Yes camp? I thought they were leaning towards NO, with Limerick leaning towards Yes?

  • Ringo

    Personally I would prefer to see the GAA reject the motion as (1) it would show what a self-centred organisation the it is and (2) as a local resident I already have to put up with enough traffic congestion and the sheer bedlam that’s created with hurling and gaelic fotball matches.

    Aren’t they entitled to be a ‘self-centred organisation’? And isn’t that allegation a bit rich considering you’re hoping the reject it because the traffic will affect you?

  • George

    Keithm,
    are you saying that the GAA should act in the national interest?

    Interesting your use of “dog in a manger”. A fan of Aesop perhaps?

  • Young Irelander

    If the GAA forces Irish fans to suffer the indignity of watching their national team play their ‘home’ game in a foreign country then they are a national disgrace.

  • Young Irelander

    If the GAA forces Irish fans to suffer the indignity of watching their national team play their ‘home’ game in a foreign country then they are a national disgrace.

  • Young Irelander

    If the GAA forces Irish fans to suffer the indignity of watching their national team play their ‘home’ game in a foreign country then they are a national disgrace.

  • Young Irelander

    If the GAA forces Irish fans to suffer the indignity of watching their national team play their ‘home’ game in a foreign country then they are a national disgrace.

  • maca

    It’s funny how it’s the GAA who are always made out to be the bad guys in this when it’s the FAI who are the gobshites who were never able to get their own stadium.

  • Friendly Fire

    Is this why Ulster counties do not favour opening up Croke Park?

    GAA, like many people in the six counties, please stop living in the past!

  • Friendly Fire

    maca, the FAI had a very honourable chap advocate an FAI stadium in City West (£40m ish) a few years back. The Fianna Fail asses scuppered it for Stadium (Bertie Bowl) Ireland.

  • maca

    Friendly Fire – i’m afraid you’re living in the past if you think that is the reason.

  • Friendly Fire

    My response is above yours maca

  • maca

    We know all about Bertie Bowl, Friendly Fire, it doesn’t change anything. Why did it take them so long to get working on a stadium? What have they been doing since then? Are they planning to just sit on it and wait for the GAA to bail them out?

  • George

    Friendly fire,
    I don’t know if the link you posed is the reason why northern counties are against removing Rule 42 but I have heard the arguement (only once) that there is a de facto ban on Gaelic Games in the rugby playing schools of this island, north and south, and that for that reason alone, they should be allowed swing in the wind.

    As for the FAI, there used to be huge crowds watching Drumcondra and other Dublin teams in the 50s not to mention Cork but virtually every penny was syphoned off, culminating in the selling of Glenmalure Park by the Kilcoynes in the 80s.

    The FAI and their cronies don’t deserve any sympathy but the ABC1 adults of the Irish Republic will never forgive the GAA if they send the Irish national team abroad to play their games.

  • PS

    If the GAA forces Irish fans to suffer the indignity of watching their national team play their ‘home’ game in a foreign country then they are a national disgrace.

    So the FAI make a laughing shock out of the country in Saipan and are so incompetent that after decades of existence they are still sponging off other sports and its the one well run prganisation that are the disgrace?! Wise up YI.

  • hensons

    Are people aware of Sinn Fein passing a supportive motion at last ard fheis, with no objections, for opening up of CP. times move..

  • PS

    Sinn Féin do not run the GAA. This is a decision for the GAA and the GAA alone.

  • Donnie

    Maca,

    There are more than 32 votes in this. The overseas bodies (New York, London, Australia etc.) have a vote as do the Past President’s and we know what they think!.

    It will be a very tight result by the time the few hundred votes are cast.

  • smcgiff

    ‘There is, of course, always the wildcard of the renegade delegate.’

    Indeed, I believe it is a secret ballot.

    Down, shot it down (couldn’t resist) by 1 vote. 21 Against, 20 For.

    Twill be close though, however, if it fails to get a 2/3rds majority, they can pass it with 50%+1 next year, AFAIK. Pity, we’d miss the France game. That’d be a cracker in Croker!

  • Donnie

    It’s looking like a clean sweep for the No camp in the 6 counties. This is undoubtedly a political vote in the north.

  • maca

    Donnie, yeah there’s more than the 32, still there are some important counties amongst that 32, remember it’s (afaik) 1 vote for every 10 affiliated clubs, which leaves the 32 ctys with the strongest voices. British and overseas have approx 50 votes (i think).

    Some of the big hitters in favour include Meath, Galway, Kildare, Tipp, Kerry, there’s a lot of votes there. Getting Limerick would be good as I think they also have a lot of votes.

    Any idea where to get a full list of everyone with votes and how much votes they have? We could do a quick count of the current situation, might be interesting…

  • George

    Maca,
    from yesterday’s Irish Examiner:
    “The pro-change lobby will need more than 200 votes on Saturday week at Croke Park – presuming the respective motion requires a two-thirds majority. Key figures suggest that has not been firmly established.

    Pundits speculate that with British and overseas support – carrying up to 50 votes – the two-thirds majority may be realised.

    Eight counties, responsible for over 50 votes, will debate the issue next week, including Cork, Limerick and Kilkenny.”

    Friendly fire,
    This is what Down county secretary Donal McCormack had to say about what the northern counties under British rule think about opening Croke Park:

    “The feeling within the county, and this is something you would probably see in most of the six counties, is very favourable towards allowing rugby in, but people aren’t so sure about soccer,” said

    “Rugby is an all-Ireland sport; soccer is not. Soccer is a 26-county sport and a six-county sport and that is the major stumbling block.”

  • Donnie

    Maca,

    Paddy Heaney gave a full breakdown in the sports section of yesterdays Irish News. I don’t have subs but if you do you can check there.

    I think he reckoned the 2/3 majority would be passed by only about 5 votes and that the overseas voters may have the final say!

  • maca

    “Down, shot it down (couldn’t resist) by 1 vote. 21 Against, 20 For.”

    Ulster sez no!

    Anyone know when Landsdowne is actually closing? I think it’s until well into 2006 so the pro-camp might get another chance at this before then if Congress votes against this year.

  • maca

    “I don’t have subs but if you do you can check there”

    Do ya think a cheap hoor like me would pay for a feckin news site?? 😉

    I’d expect the forriners to vote in favour (hard to judge the North Americaners though)

  • Donnie

    Do ya think a cheap hoor like me would pay for a feckin news site?? 😉

    I’m not knocking cheap hoors 🙂

    Heaney reckoned New York, Canada and Oz would vote No although I’m not sure what he is basing his presumption on.

    I’ll dig out yesterday’s IN when I get home and post all the info.

  • Young Irelander

    PS,

    When have I ever defended the FAI? I think they are inept and an embarrassment. Even so, for the GAA to force Irish people to watch their national team play on British soil would be shameful and an utter disgrace.

    Stop passing the buck. The GAA have an important decision to make and they better make the right one which would be to allow soccer and rugby to be played, even if only on a temporary basis.

  • Young Irelander

    PS,

    When have I ever defended the FAI? I think they are inept and an embarrassment. Even so, for the GAA to force Irish people to watch their national team play on British soil would be shameful and an utter disgrace.

    Stop passing the buck. The GAA have an important decision to make and they better make the right one which would be to allow soccer and rugby to be played, even if only on a temporary basis.

  • Young Irelander

    PS,

    When have I ever defended the FAI? I think they are inept and an embarrassment. Even so, for the GAA to force Irish people to watch their national team play on British soil would be shameful and an utter disgrace.

    Stop passing the buck. The GAA have an important decision to make and they better make the right one which would be to allow soccer and rugby to be played, even if only on a temporary basis.

  • Young Irelander

    PS,

    When have I ever defended the FAI? I think they are inept and an embarrassment. Even so, for the GAA to force Irish people to watch their national team play on British soil would be shameful and an utter disgrace.

    Stop passing the buck. The GAA have an important decision to make and they better make the right one which would be to allow soccer and rugby to be played, even if only on a temporary basis.

  • maca

    YI
    “Stop passing the buck”

    That’s exactly what you are doing when you put the whole responsibility for this on GAA shoulders.

    The landsdowne mods have been planned for some time, and they still have a year or more before they are stuck for a pitch so why don’t the IRFU push to get Windsor up to scratch, after all the IRFU are All Ireland so Windsor should be their second home, IMHO.

    Donnie
    “Heaney reckoned New York, Canada and Oz would vote No although I’m not sure what he is basing his presumption on.”

    Irish-American-nationalist attitudes?

  • maca

    Donnie
    I think I found (more or less) what you were talking about, from the Indo:

    http://unison.ie/sportsdesk/stories.php3?ca=13&si=1371366

    “An Irish Independent tally of the counties that have already decided what way their votes are going – and of those counties who have yet to decide – concludes that just over two-thirds of the delegates will vote in favour of temporary change.

    The tally puts the votes for change at 229, with 107 against. With an estimated total electorate of 336, the figure required for a two-thirds majority is 224 votes, so the ‘yes’ camp would have just five votes to spare.

    However, that conclusion is based on all 30 votes from Britain supporting change.

    There are other considerations too. Every county and unit may not have full representation, while some Central Council delegates may feel that they don’t have to mirror their county’s vote.

    Amazingly, Britain has almost as many votes as the province of Connacht and when the overseas vote is combined (Europe, New York, North America, Canada and Australia) they have a voting bloc of 56.

    It is these votes that will decide if Croke Park will remain closed to other international sports.”

  • maca

    Updated list:

    Connaught
    * Galway 10 – IN FAVOUR
    * Leitrim 5 – YET TO VOTE
    * Mayo 6 – Deciding on the day, likely against
    * Roscommon 6 – IN FAVOUR
    * Sligo 6 – IN FAVOUR

    Prediction: 27 for, 6 against

    Leinster
    * Carlow 5 – IN FAVOUR
    * Dublin 11 – IN FAVOUR
    * Kildare 9 – IN FAVOUR
    * Kilkenny 5 – IN FAVOUR
    * Laois 10 – IN FAVOUR
    * Longford 6 – IN FAVOUR
    * Louth – IN FAVOUR
    * Meath 11 – IN FAVOUR
    * Offaly 10 – IN FAVOUR
    * Westmeath – IN FAVOUR
    * Wexford 11 – IN FAVOUR
    * Wicklow 8 – IN FAVOUR

    Prediction: 98 for, 0 against

    Munster
    * Clare 10 – IN FAVOUR
    * Cork 11 – OPPOSED
    * Kerry 8 – IN FAVOUR
    * Limerick 11 – YET TO VOTE (next week)
    * Tipperary 9 – IN FAVOUR
    * Waterford 7 – IN FAVOUR

    Prediction: 45 for, 11 against

    Ulster
    * Antrim 11 – OPPOSED
    * Armagh 7 – OPPOSED
    * Cavan 7 – IN FAVOUR
    * Derry 7 – OPPOSED
    * Donegal 7 – IN FAVOUR
    * Down 8 – OPPOSED
    * Fermanagh 6 – OPPOSED
    * Monaghan 6 – OPPOSED
    * Tyrone 8 – OPPOSED

    Prediction: 14 for, 53 against

    Schools/Colleges /Handball
    Prediction: 3 for, 2 against

    Past Presidents
    Prediction: 1 for, 9 against

    Management Committee
    Prediction: 5 for, 6 against

    Overseas
    North American Board 8, New York 6, Canada 4, Australia 4, Europe 4. London 5, Britain 30 (Lancashire 5, Yorkshire 4, Warwickshire 4, Scotland 4, Hertsfordshire 4, Gloucestershire 4). Total: 56 votes

    Prediction: 36 for, 20 against

    TOTAL For 229 Against 107

    God, it’s even more exciting that the Eurovision! Ok … well amost as exciting.

  • GavBelfast

    At least it’s all very straight-forward, I’ll give them that.

  • PB

    Barbour jackets and tweed caps from Dublin 4 watching rugby in Croke Park? NEVER

    This is the slippery slope…next they’ll want Pairc Ui Caoimh, then Semple Stadium, then Pearse Stadium, then…