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Dublin CEO John Costello wants black card introduced to hurling

john costello

Dublin GAA County Secretary John Costello has released his Annual Report ahead of the Dublin GAA Convention.

In his Annual Report, John Costello has backed the introduction of the black card to hurling. He has also suggested that the LGFA and Camogie Association should join the GAA under “one umbrella.”

john costello

Black Card

Costello covered a range of issues in his report and was very forthright when it came to introducing the black card to hurling. He has joined the likes of Limerick selector Donal O’Grady in publicly asking the GAA to look at the issue.

Earlier this year, GAA Congress voted against the introduction of the black card to hurling. The county secretary feels that a lot of “well meaning” hurling people are opposed to the idea but the punishment of a yellow card isn’t severe enough to tackle the problem.

black card hurling

“Perhaps they view football and hurling as two very distinct games that shouldn’t automatically be viewed through the same rule book prism – and they have a point. But perhaps some of them also possess a slightly misty-eyed view of the ancient game: that our warrior heroes are incapable of cynicism? If that is their belief, clearly they are wrong.”

“Cynicism exists in every team sport; it is more likely to be prevalent at the elite level, too, unless there are sufficient sanctions that render it damaging to your team’s prospects. We have seen what you might term flagrant ‘black card’ offences in hurling on numerous occasions, and several times in this year’s championship too.

“The rugby-tackle pull-down that coughs up a free – and a relatively worthless yellow card – is the most recurring and frustrating one, especially when one team is defending a lead and hellbent on avoiding the concession of a goal. Would you see less of this particular type of foul if the punishment was ten minutes in the bin? We suspect so.”

john costello


In a wide ranging annual report, John Costello feels that the “momentum of 20×20 must not be lost beyond 2020”. When it comes to government funding, male players receive over four times more investment than female players through government funding, “€3m v €700k in 2020.” He would like to see the GAA and WPGA merge under the one umbrella in order to address this imbalance.

“Clearly, there is a need to address this imbalance but, leaving aside the question of State support, perhaps it is also time for the ladies association as well as camogie to unite all Gaelic games associations while also potentially merging the GPA and the WPGA to strengthen their ties and come under the one umbrella.”

John Costello didn’t address the funding issue in his report but did have his say on it last year. 

The full report can be found here. The Dublin GAA Convention will take place on Wednesday 16th December.

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