A sin bin will be trialled in hurling this year as part of a crackdown on cynical play, which will also see penalties awarded in hurling and Gaelic football when a clear goal-scoring opportunity is denied.

The GAA's 2021 Congress voted in favour of Motion 20 by 61% to 39%, despite several delegates calling for the motion to be delayed for a Special Congress later in the year.

In hurling, the rule change will mean if the referee adjudges a clear goal-scoring chance within the 20-metre line or arc is denied after the attacker is pulled down, tripped, or struck with a hurley in a careless manner, a penalty will be awarded and the player who committed the foul will be shown a yellow card and sent from the field for 10 minutes.

Similarly in football, for the same offence in the same area of the field, a penalty will be awarded and a black card issued.

The Gaelic Players Association were among those opposed, with a number of high-profile current and former hurlers speaking against the motion, which was proposed by the standing committee on playing rules and backed by central council.

Others suggested the rule asked too much of referees.

However, Michael Duignan and others argued that the time for action on cynical play was now and the majority of delegates agreed.

Elsewhere, delegates voted in favour of the split season, which from 2022 will see the All-Ireland finals played by the end of July, to allow club players a defined and dedicated season from August onwards.

This vote would have been quite a surprise before the coronavirus-impacted 2020 season, where two defined seasons were introduced and deemed to be largely successful.

The Club Players Association welcomed the decision on Twitter: "Everyone finally arrives at the same destination. Four years on. We fought for fixtures & kept the faith. Looking forward now to a better GAA for all players."

Other significant votes from the GAA's first 'virtual' congress, which saw John Horan chair his final event before handing over the GAA presidency to Larry McCarthy, included the effective eradication of the Maor Foirne role, as now only medics will be allowed to enter the field of play.

Also all county senior and intermediate championships can now only contain a maximum of 16 teams. While inter-county players will now be obligated to undertake the GAA's anti-doping course within the past 12 months or incur a one-match suspension.

Joint captains will also no longer be allowed to lift trophies together.