Conor Lane to referee All-Ireland SFC Final
The GAA has confirmed that Cork native Conor Lane will referee the All-Ireland SFC Final between Dublin and Mayo on September 18, while Down’s Ciaran Branagan will referee the Minor game between Kerry and Galway.
Lane, a member of the Banteer/Lyre club, previously refereed the All-Ireland Minor final in 2013 between Mayo and Tyrone, the Connacht Final in 2013 and 2016, as well as this year’s All-Ireland Senior Club Final.
He’s been busy in this year’s Championship, refereeing the All-Ireland Quarter-Final between Galway and Tipperary, the drawn Connacht Final between Galway and Roscommon, the Connacht Semi-Final between Mayo and Galway, and the Ulster Semi-Final between Monaghan and Down.
“I'm delighted to get the call, absolutely over the moon,” said Lane shortly after being told of his appointment today.
“I’m shocked and delighted. Once you get a Quarter-Final your hat is in the ring and it could go with any of the four referees, it was just my year this year. I'm just delighted for myself and my family, the umpires and club to represent them.
“You’ve to keep your feet on the ground, to do the best you can, to be as anonymous as you can be on the day. It is the players' day out, you apply the rules, I don't want to be seen or heard after if I can at all possible.”
Lane began refereeing in 2005 and is relatively young at 38 years of age, so his rise through the ranks of refereeing has been impressively swift.
“I started with John Geaney from Cork who used to do the refereeing on the National Panel, I started doing the line with him and umpiring,” says Lane.
“I took it on from there, my neighbour, Richie Murphy, was a referee as well. I became friendly with him and I started refereeing and did a course in 2004-2005, it took off from there then with the Duhallow Division then you progress with the County Board in Cork and into Munster.
“Then you get National Level and off up then into the Championship panel. That is the way it goes.”
Lane’s umpires are John Joe Lane, Pat Kelly, DJ O’Sullivan, and Ray Hegarty.
“You'd be nowhere without the boys and they enjoy it as well,” says Lane. “We head off in the morning at nine o'clock and you'd pull in home at half nine or quarter to 10 at night. They've families as well, you get in the match report then, it could be 11 o'clock by the time you're finished your day's work.
“It is a long day for everyone. But sure they are delighted as well, I just rang them, they're shocked too. You'd be getting whispers all week that this is your chance, but you've nothing got until you get the phone-call. I was thrilled, shocked, and delighted.”
Maurice Deegan (Laois) will be the stand-by referee for the All-Ireland Final, Joe McQuillan (Cavan) will be Linesman, and Derek O’Mahony (Tipperary) will be the sideline official.
Minor All-Ireland Final referee, Ciaran Branagan, is a member of the Clonduff club. In this year’s football championship he has already refereed the Connacht Senior Final Replay between Galway and Roscommon, the All-Ireland SFC Quarter-Final between Dublin and Donegal, the Round 2B Qualifier between Monaghan and Longford and the Leinster SFC Quarter-Final between Dublin and Laois.
Sunday September 18
GAA Football All-Ireland Senior Championship Final
Dublin v Mayo, Croke Park, 3.30pm (RTE/Sky Sports)
Referee: Conor Lane (Corcaigh)
Stand By: Maurice Deegan (Laois)
Linesman: Joe McQuillan (An Cabhán)
Sideline: Derek O’Mahoney (Tiobraid Árann)
Umpires: John Joe Lane, DJ O'Sullivan (both Banteer/Lyre), Ray Hegarty (Bride Rovers) and Pat Kelly (Kilshannig)
Electric Ireland GAA Football All-Ireland Minor Championship Final
Kerry v Galway, Croke Park, 1.15pm (TG4)
Referee: Ciaran Branagan (An Dún)
Stand By: Patrick Neilan (Ros Comáin)
Linesman: Niall Cullen (Fear Manach)
Sideline: James Bermingham (Corcaigh)
Umpires: Mark Doherty (Ballykinlar), Mickey Curran (Ardglass), Seamus O'Hanlon (Kilcoo) & 4th TBC.