The GAA has steered through the necessary rule change to meet the Government requirement that there be a minimum 60/40 gender balance on sporting leadership groups.

At a GAA Special Congress held on Saturday 79 percent of delegates voted in favour of Motion 9 which proposed a minimum of 40 per cent female or male representation on Coiste Bainistí, the GAA Management Committee.

“It’s a good thing to do but it’s not revolutionary or anything like that,” said Director General Tom Ryan after the vote.

“I wouldn’t over-state it. It’s the right direction for us to move in. It reflects where society is going in all manner of enterprises and undertakings.”

“The GAA should be a leader in these kinds of things so I think it’s to the credit of the Association.”

“I do know there were some differing views and that’s okay too, people are entitled to express a view. I think what was good about the last few weeks is that it was never really on the agenda and then it was something we talked about and argued about but it’s done now.”

“It’s something we needed to get done and now we can move on.”

Currently three of Coiste Bainistí’s 19 board members are female which equates to 16%.

The vote is the start of what will be a three-stage process towards gender balance by initially increasing the size of Coiste Bainistí to 21 members in 2024 of which nine will be female.

From 2027 onwards, a 16-person Coiste Bainistí will include a minimum of seven females.

There were eight other motions passed, mainlky relating to the structure of under age competitions and certain technical areas.

Motion six proposed that the All Ireland Finals in Gaelic Football and Hurling be played on or before the last Sunday in July will have exercised some commentators but was passed my a margin of 90 percent of those who had taken soundings from across the membership of the association who they represent.