In the lead up to the start of the Allianz Hurling League, the Referees Development Chairperson, Willie Barrett, believed that there were issues in hurling that needed to be addressed.

He was referring to the execution of the handpass and high challenges to the head or upper part of the body – or quite simply behaving in a manner that is dangerous to an opponent.

And so referees were expected to clamp down hard on any transgressions.

On Saturday evening, Clare's Tony Kelly saw red when he was adjudged to have led with the forearm when tackling Tipperary's Padriac Maher during the Division 1A clash in Thurles.

The general view afterwards was that Kelly was unlucky to have received his marching orders from referee Colm Lyons.

On Allianz League Sunday, former Waterford boss Derek McGrath said: "I think it (tackle) was momentum based, it was innocuous.

"Referees have been under pressure all week given the assessor's announcement that they are going to be looking at head contact.

"To me, Kelly was using his arm as a means of getting out of the tackle. The pressure was obviously on Colm Lyons - (a) live game on telly.

Fellow analyst Anthony Daly spoke about a level of consistency that should be reached when saying: "What have we to change? We are coming off the most magnificent season of hurling that we ever had and now we are complaining about X, Y and Z.

"Davy (Fitzgerald) nailed it in his interview  when he spoke about the pressure coming on referees. Colm (Lyons) was the first guy in the brunt of it.

He continued: "In the first 10 minutes of Tipp v Clare, we had two handpassess blown up and that was that. 

"Across the weekend, we saw a couple of strikes with the hurley on the helmet, yet there were no red cards."