Grimley defends ban on media
Tuesday, 1 July 2014
ARMAGH manager Paul Grimley insists that the media ban on Orchard players and management is a result of what he feels was hysterical reporting about the pre-match fight against Cavan.
Grimley said he understands that the supporters have a right to know what the Armagh management and players have to say, but he said he doesn't trust the national media.
Immediately after Saturday night's drawn Ulster semi-final game, while the majority of journalists were talking to Monaghan manager Malachy O'Rourke, I approached Kieran McGeeney and Paul Grimley when Grimley informed me there would be no interviews with the media.
Having pushed the Armagh manager for an explanation on a media ban that deprives Orchard supporters a chance to get an insight into the thinking and views of the players and management, Grimley said he was disappointed with how the row before the Armagh v Cavan came was covered.
He believes the national coverage forced the GAA and the CCCC into suspending players, including Armagh's Brendan Donaghy, Kieran Toner and Andy Mallon, and Cavan's Martin Dunne and Fergal Flannigan.
Speaking on the record to the Newry Democrat, Grimley said he was annoyed with how the incident was covered.
“While I regret that local media have not been given access to players and management to relay to Armagh supporters, but what goes into the local press also goes into the national media," said Grimley.
“We only have to look back at the hysterical reporting after the Cavan game, which was laughable.
“The media did, in my opinion, influence Liam O'Neill and Pauric Duffy and the CCC and put pressure on them and they reacted as they normally do.
“We were standing in an orderly fashion behind the band and we were attacked. Liam O'Neill might say that we stood behind the wrong flag but there is no proto call in the GAA rulebook about standing behind the band but there is an unwritten understanding that the home team stands at the inside.
“Obviously on a neutral venue you stand behind the flag. In the Ulster Council should have rectified it straight away. We were in a line a clear 50 seconds before Cavan decided to take their place.
“But yet the CCC saw fit to ban three of our players and only two of Cavan's and they were the aggressors.
“Obviously there was only one way to deal with this and that is to turn around and protest as hysterical reporting put pressure on the CCC and put pressure on me and O'Neill thought the easy target was Armagh and now we are in a position where we can't trust the media to report accurately. So the best thing to do is to leave them to their own devices."
On the Monaghan match, he said he was happy with the players and how they performed and he expects the three returning players to have a significant influence in the game.
And Grimley said that no decision has been taken yet as to when the media ban will end.
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