Friday 15 December 2017

Tyrone tackle media over controversy following Cavanagh foul

THE Tyrone county board last night distributed a document to attending media at their pre All-Ireland semi-final press briefing at the county's lush new facility at Garvaghey entitled: 'Never Let the Facts Get in the Way of a Good Story...?,' an apparent response to the unfavourable comment aimed at Mickey Harte's men in recent weeks.

The page, supplied by county board officials, contained eight different bullet points, defending Tyrone's footballing ethos and recent record in the area of discipline and fouling. They include: "Fact: Tyrone have been 10% more-fouled-than-they-foul in 2013," a statistic backed up with specific numbers for this season.

"Fact: Seán Cavanagh has shipped one-foul-in-every-six by opposing teams on Tyrone this year," and "Fact: Tyrone does not condone let alone coach fouling in any way, shape or form."

The document also outlined Tyrone's reason for their opposition to the 'black card' rule at Congress earlier this year, claiming it was "not well thought out," and their prediction,"it will lead to chaos." It comes in a week after Conor Gormley was cited and proposed for a one match ban, encompassing next Sunday week's semi-final clash with Mayo, a suspension which Harte confirmed the player would be appealing.

The three-time All-Ireland winning manager also revealed that Martin Penrose had also sought a hearing, set to take place some time this week.

Speaking about the reaction to Cavanagh's last ditch tackle on Conor McManus in the quarter-final, Harte insisted: "It's an awful pity that so much attention should be put on that aspect of a game.

"I have never seen him go to hurt anybody in his life, pull a dirty stroke in his life ... He admitted himself that the pull-down was cynical. Cynical has become a much more nasty word for pulls than it used to be in the past for things that were much worse than pulling down people. That's where we're at – the language has taken on a new depth of seriousness."

GALWAY'S minor girls footballers snatched a highly dramatic goal from Leann Walsh in the eight minute of injury-time to defeat a heartbroken Dublin, 3-13 to 2-14, in last night's All-Ireland MFC final replay at Cusack Park, Mullingar.

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