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GAA

Not too long ago, the dublin SHC was deemed an impediment to the advancement of the county championsat the next level of competition. "Ballyhale are fantastic Hurlers" said Liam Hogan, the offaly man who managed Ballyboden to five Dublin SHC titles in a row, coming after one particulary dispiriting 12-point loss in the 2009 Leinster Championship - albeit to the then all-conquering Kilkenny club in their trophy-collecting pomp.

Tomás Ó Sé is in favour of the GAA trying out five new rules in the National Football League next season - but thinks that one of the proposals might struggle to be adopted. The GAA Rules Committee issued a list of experimental changes to be adopted during the 2019 league, including a limit to three consecutive handpasses from a team, that sideline kicks must go forward, an offensive mark inside the 21m line from kicks delivered outside the 45, a sin bin for black card offences or two yellow cards and that teams must only have two players between the 45m lines for kick-outs and the ball must cross the 45. Reaction to the changes has been mixed, with many welcoming the move to liven up a sport that has become increasingly dull in recent years, although some have expressed misgivings about bringing in so many new rules at once. After the proposals are trialled in the league, they will be voted on at congress to see if they will be adopted for the championship. Despite initially being against the changes, Kerry legend Ó Sé told GAA.ie that he has since come around to the ideas.

SOCCER

Sacking Martin O'Neill as Ireland manager today would not make the Irish soccer scene a better place overnight, but it would be a good place to start. Tuesday's miserable outcome a 1-10 loss at home to a weekend Walws side was not a case of weakness. It was the latest sign of sickness which has been at the heart of the national team for some time. O'Neill is not the cause, he's the product of an infected system. But that does not mean he should stay in the job as, after five-plus years, his race is run. His team has been in decline for more than a year, and apart from bravado about big wins in the past, there is no evidence from the last nine games that he can change it.

THIS WEEKENDS MATCHES

SUNDAY

Dublin SCH "A" Final

Ballyboden St. Endas v Kilmacud Crokes // Parnell Park // 4pm

Dublin SHC "B" Final

Faughs v St Oliver Plunkett's // Parnell Park // 2pm