Leinster GAA have been asked to investigate the way in which the 2019 minor football championship draw was conducted, the Wicklow county board has confirmed.
Last week, a video surfaced online of a local club member carrying out the draw which took place on Thursday, the 5th of September.
The video, which is alleged to show the individual picking up their club’s name off the table, next to the trophy in which the other club — Derry Gaels — was contained, has circulated around social media, and has led to people accusing the person of fixing the draw.
The individual has staunchly defended their role in the controversy, and has requested for the removal of the video, under threat of legal action.
Chief executive of the Wicklow county board, Martin Fitzgerald, has confirmed to WicklowNews that he has invited the provincial council to conduct an independent inquiry into the way in which the draw was done, due to the possibilty of a conflict of interest associated with Wicklow undertaking the investigation themselves.
Fitzgerald insisted that there was no collusion between the individual and the county board, while expressing hope that Leinster’s investigation would put an end to the saga.
Meanwhile, he has denied reports that Leinster will be looking into the senior hurling semi-final draw.
On Thursday morning, a story emerged claiming that both the minor football and senior hurling draws would be investigated, after a video of the latter, which involved Fitzgerald pulling names out of paper cups, received criticism online.
Fitzgerald has stated that the Leinster Council had not been asked to inquire into the conduct of that particular draw, saying that the clubs in question — Bray Emmets, St. Pat’s, Carnew Emmets, and Glenealy — were all present and had asked for it to be done at that time, despite the county board’s plan to complete it at a later date, with the appropriate logistics and equipment.
Update: Leinster GAA have confirmed to WicklowNews that they were asked by Wicklow GAA to undertake a “fact-finding” mission, with regards to the minor football championship draw, and that they hope for the process to be completed “within the next fortnight”.
As for the hurling draw, Leinster have echoed the sentiments of Wicklow chairman Martin Fitzgerald; calling reports of an inquest, “fake news, as Donald Trump would put it”.