Not even a hack-saw would have cut the tension in Brian Lohan's post-match interview 3 months ago

Not even a hack-saw would have cut the tension in Brian Lohan's post-match interview

There were about ten straight seconds during  Tipperary's Munster championship clash with Clare on Sunday, when you stared at the screen in disbelief, fully convinced that your eyes had deceived you.

Tipp were just clawing the thing back, having gone into the break trailing by two, but then along came referee James Owens with the lifeboat of all lifeboats. Where it came from, you'd have to question, how it got there, only God and the Wexford ref knows, but there should be no doubt in anyone's mind that it was the point which sent this game on a u-turn.

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Seconds later, you wouldn't have to have been a lip-reader to find out what Brian Lohan thought of it all and after the final whistle, as the Wolfe Tones' club-man stood on the sideline like a bull-dog chewing a wasp, let's just say you'd have given him a wide berth if the situation arose.

Jake Morris was 31 metres from the goal and about two metres from the sideline when he was poleaxed by a rash and late Aidan McCarthy. It was yellow card time, make no bones about it, but it was only when the Inagh Kilnamona stretched the arms out wide and looked around him in disbelief when you realised there was something serious happening here.

Out came the yellow card, soon to be revealed as the sin-bin when McCarthy headed for the line. It took James Owens longer to make it back to the 21 when he signalled for a penalty and almost immediately, you could sense the confusion spreading around the Gaelic Grounds. Jason Forde made no mistake, and with Tipp outscoring Clare by 2-4 to 0-2 in the next ten minutes, it's clear the impact this one decision had.

Jackie Tyrrell says the rule should be threw into the river.

"There's no way Jake Morris was going to score a goal from there," he said on RTE afterwards.

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"He had four defenders to beat. I'd love to get this sin-bin and throw it in the river. That was a disgrace. James Owens should be held totally accountable for this," added the Kilkenny man.

Anthony Daly has never seen the likes.

"Why didn't he take his time? Ask the lines-man about it and I'd say the lines-man would have said 'will ya stop James? I don't know what referee at the top-level would deem that as a goalscoring opportunity. That's a referee playing God

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And fifteen minutes later, when Brian Lohan was talking to Damian Lawlor for his post-match interview, all the legendary full back wanted was some fair play.

"Do I need to talk about it?" began Lohan.

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"I didn't get any information to explain the decision. I think the boos at the end of the game from the crowd explained what had happened. The rule is okay. I have no problem with the rule. It's the interpretation for it. I'd say he's the only person in the ground who thought it was a goalscoring opportunity.  All we can do is take our beating and move on. But we want a bit of fair play and we didn't get that today."

When asked if he'd have sympathy for Owens, given the grey areas involved with the rule in question, Lohan's repsonse was unequivocal.

"I wouldn't, no."

 

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