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*Barry Kelly and his officials. Photograph: Burren Eye Photography

PAST PLAYERS and members of GAA clubs across Clare have been urged to consider becoming a referee this year as the county deals with a shortage of whistlers.

Concern was raised by officers both of whom were former referees at the 2021 County Convention over the shortage of referees in Clare with increasing pressure placed on the match officials to cover a multitude of games spread across the county.

Coiste na nÓg secretary, Pat Gavin warned that the current amount of games are unlikely to continue if there is not an increase in referees.

He detailed that their fixtures took place in 2021 thanks to a “loyal band of referees”. The Ogonnelloe man added, “we appreciate the way they give of their time so freely at all times so games can be played. It is important we continue at all times to show the utmost respect to our referees without whom there could be no games to entertain us all.

“If the current programme of games is to continue going forward then clubs are going to have to supply more people to come forward and take up the whistle and become an official referee,” Gavin cautioned.

Jack Chaplin in his first and final address to Convention as Chairman stated, “I am however concerned that we are drawing from a small pool of referees and I appeal to our clubs, past players and anyone interested to offer their services in this area”.

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