Regulating Mixed Martial Arts and athlete welfare - Panel discussion at Sports law Ireland Conference 2019

LawInSport in partnership with the Sports Law Bar Association of Ireland will be hosting a one-day conference in Dublin on the 8 February 2019 to contemporary issues in sports law and celebrate the contribution of Irish Sports Lawyers and Sports Business Professionals contribution to the development of international sports governance, regulation and law.

To discuss the regulation of Mixed Martial Arts and athlete welfare, we have brought together leading experts to debate the issue.

The speakers on the MMA and athlete welfare panel are:

  • Paul McGarry SC, President of Irish Sports Law Bar Association (Panel Chair)
  • Prof Jack Anderson, Professor of Sports Law, Melbourne University
  • Isobel Carnwath, Director of Brand, Commerce and Communications, International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF)
  • Gareth Farrelly, Solicitor and Former Republic of Ireland and Premier League football player.
  • Aisling Daly, Former UFC fighter, Safe MMA ambassador

The conference will also offer unrivaled networking opportunity with the leading experts, lawyers and executives in the sports sector as well as 4 interactive panel discussions.

For further information including the full agenda and speaker list, and details of how to book your place click here:

You can follow updates from the conference on Twitter using #SportsLawIre19

Speaker Profiles

Paul McGarry SC, President of Irish Sports Law Bar Association (Panel Chair)

Paul McGarry SC was Chairman of the Bar of Ireland from July 2016 to July 2018. Called to the Bar in 1996 and appointed a Senior Counsel in 2010, he is also a member of the Bar of England and Wales since 2012. He obtained a BCL from University College Dublin in 1991 and an LLM in EU Law in 1992. His practice is primarily in public, commercial and European law.  He is an accredited mediator and international arbitrator.
He has served on many bodies and authorities, including the Judicial Appointments Advisory Board, Courts Service Board, Euro Changeover Board, the Board of Irish Rail and the International Council for Advocates and Barristers.

He is currently head of the Irish delegation to the Council of European Bars and Law Societies (2014-16 and 2018-2020). He is also co-chair of the IBA Forum for Advocates and Barristers (2018-2020), and chairman of both the EU Bar Association and the Sports Law Bar Association of Ireland.

He is a bencher of both Kings Inns and Middle Temple.

Prof Jack Anderson, Professor of Sports Law, Melbourne University

Jack Anderson is Professor and Director of Sports Law Studies at the University of Melbourne. He has published widely in the area of sports law including The Legality of Boxing (2007),Textbook on Sports Law (2010), Leading Cases in Sports Law (2013) and EU Sports Law (2017). He is a Chartered Arbitrator and, having previously been an arbitrator with the GAA, FAI and Just Sport Ireland, he is currently a mediator/arbitrator for Sports Resolutions UK and the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

He supports Doon, Limerick, Munster, Ireland and Watford FC and, yes, he looks like Paul Scholes.

Isobel Carnwath, Director of Brand, Commerce and Communications, International Mixed Martial Arts Federation (IMMAF)

Isobel (Izzy) Carnwath has worked in public relations for MMA since 2010, initially representing professional promoters and competitors, with BAMMA as a main client.

She was part of the founding team in 2011 -12 of SAFE MMA, a non-profit and volunteer led medical project dedicated to the safety of MMA fighters. She has volunteered within its administrative management since that time, becoming a trustee on its registration as a charity in December 2018.

Isobel first joined new international sports governing body, IMMAF, in 2013 - 2014, and worked as part of the organising team for the first IMMAF World Championships of Amateur MMA in Las Vegas. She assumed a full time role within IMMAF in 2015 as Marketing and Communications Director.

Gareth Farrelly, Solicitor and Former Republic of Ireland and Premier League football player.

Gareth joined Bermans in 2018, following qualification as a commercial litigation lawyer in the City and previous to that a successful career as a Premiership and international footballer.

He has accrued a wealth of experience in a wide range of white-collar crime matters, including SFO investigations and corporate compliance. The fusion of this specialist grounding and Gareth’s contact base has meant that he has developed niche expertise in complex high value tax fraud litigation and associated negligence actions as well as claims for restitution from mis-sold financial products.

He has also developed significant expertise in sports law, building on his extensive practical experience in the sporting industry.

He has been involved in numerous transfers and disputes concerning current and former players, including a leading Court of Arbitration for Sport case which resulted in changes being made to the rules. In addition, he is a member of the Football Association’s Judicial Panel and sits on both the Chairman’s Panel and the Football Panel. He is a member of Sports Resolutions’ independent Panel of Arbitrators and Mediators.

Aisling Daly, Former UFC fighter, Safe MMA ambassador

Aisling is Ireland's first ever professional female mixed martial arts competitor beginning her career in 2007. She then went on to win Ireland's first ever world title in MMA in the US in 2011 beating current UFC stand out Jessica Eye in the 2nd round via rear naked choke. Aisling competed internationally in a number of major MMA promotions including European front runner Cage Warriors fighting championship, the all female promotion Invicta Fighting Championship and Ultimate Fighting Championship rival Bellator MMA. Aisling began her career in MMA's premier promotion the UFC in 2014 having taken part in The Ultimate Fighter reality TV show. Aisling's career ended prematurely in 2017 due to minor brain injury. Aisling had amassed a record of 16 wins and 6 losses. Aisling is now a personal trainer and black belt Brazilian Jiu Jitsu coach.



Leave a comment

Please login to leave a comment.

Official partners 

Soccerex Core Logo
YRDA Logo2
SAC logo LawAccord

Copyright © LawInSport Limited 2010 - 2018. These pages contain general information only. Nothing in these pages constitutes legal advice. You should consult a suitably qualified lawyer on any specific legal problem or matter. The information provided here was accurate as of the day it was posted; however, the law may have changed since that date. This information is not intended to be, and should not be used as, a substitute for taking legal advice in any specific situation. LawInSport is not responsible for any actions taken or not taken on the basis of this information. Please refer to the full terms and conditions on our website.