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Back in the day - Hurling helmets compulsory? - The Irish News, Feb 9 1999

The Irish News Archive

THE GAA may be forced to move quickly to enact a rule forcing all underage hurlers to wear helmets after a 16-year-old successfully sued his club for allowing him to play without the protection.

A Cork youngster last week was awarded damages of £1,600 by his local circuit court against his own club for a blow he received to his nose in a match 18 months ago.

The case is being seen by some as a landmark judgement which, in theory, has major implications for all hurlers including senior stars.

Currently, there is no rule in the GAA’s official guide which makes the wearing of helmets compulsory for underage players or indeed older hurlers.

Indeed, attempts at the Congresses of 1990s and 1995 to introduce a rule ordering players to wear the protection were defeated.

If an appeal to this judgement is not lodged within 14 days, in effect it will become a legal precedent, and could open the floodgates to further injury claims by young hurlers

The GAA’s current policy of leaving the wearing of helmets and face-guards was enacted by the association’s wide-ranging Commission Report of 1971.

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A TRIPLE fracture will keep young attacking star Peter Loughran out of the running for Armagh’s clash with NFL champions Offaly on Sunday.

He broke three small bones in a wrist last week during a challenge with Meath match and could also be sidelined from the Ulster U21 Championship first round on February 20.

Armagh face Derry at Ballinascreen in the under-age series, while the seniors are also likely to be without Barry O’Hagan for this week’s league contest at Crossmaglen.

“It was an unfortunate injury for young Loughran at a time when we are looking at an important series of games, for both our seniors and U21s,” said team spokesman Patrick Nugent.

“His wrist is in plaster at the moment, he’ll play not part in Sunday’s match against Offaly, and may be ruled out of the U21 Championship game with Derry on the 20th of this month.”

O’Hagan, a member of Queen’s Sigerson Cup squad for tomorrow’s crucial second round tie in Dublin against UCD, is facing a scan to determine the extent of a back injury.

He is thought unlikely to participate in the Sigerson qualifier, and Armagh’s spokesman said he was a doubt for the visit of the NFL champions.

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DERRY City will be without star striker Liam Coyle for tonight’s Irish News Cross Border Cup semi-final game against arch rivals Finn Harps at the Brandywell (7.30pm).

The 30-year-old Derryman will be at the Carlisle Ground, instead of the Brandywell, representing the National League in a prestigious friendly international against the Republic of Ireland B.

Defender Sean Hargan, who injured a groin during the Candystripes’ 2-0 cup win over Dundalk at the weekend, will also be missing, while Gary Beckett (hip) remains out.

Manager Kevin Mahon is expected to give teenage forward, Darren McCaul a rare starting place in Coyle’s absence and will utilise the versatility of his small panel to compensate for the loss of Hargan and Beckett.

 

 

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