Northern Ireland news

Antrim GAA board to meet Cushendall club over missing cash claims

Antrim GAA chiefs are set to meet with officials from Cushendall hurling club
Connla Young

ANTRIM GAA chiefs are set to meet with officials from a hurling club at the centre of missing cash claims.

Ruairí Óg CLG in Cushendall is carrying out an investigation after allegations that more than £100,000 went missing from the club’s coffers.

The county board's decision to meet the club was taken after the issue was discussed at a county management committee meeting earlier this week.

County chairman Collie Donnelly confirmed on Thursday night that the board will be “asking for a meeting with Cushendall officers and that will happen some time next week”.

It is understood the investigation is centred on the activity of an individual connected to the club.

Well-placed sources say the majority of members have a sympathetic attitude to the person.

The PSNI has confirmed it has not received any reports.

Details of the allegations emerged just weeks after Cushendall was beaten in its first ever All-Ireland hurling club final on St Patrick’s Day.

In the run-up to the game the club received high-profile support from Hollywood star Liam Neeson.

In a statement last week, Cushendall chairman Brian Kearney said: “These allegations, which came to light recently, are naturally upsetting for our club and our members.

“However, we must ensure that we have the full facts before we take any necessary and decisive action.”

He also said all donations received to support the club's All-Ireland campaign are accounted for.

Meanwhile, Mr Donnelly said officials will also meet with members of the county’s senior hurling team at the weekend.

The meeting comes after allegations that some players placed bets on their own team to lose.

Rumours of a match fixing scandal surfaced after London hurlers beat Antrim in the National Hurling League earlier last month.

However, bookmakers did not report unusual betting patterns and Mr Donnelly said “nothing of any substance” has been produced to the county board.

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