The GAA have confirmed the 'mark' will be introduced at the start of 2017

The rule was changed at GAA's Congress in Carlow last month

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Longford's Darren Gallaher fields a high ball under pressure from Dublin players Niall Scully, left, and Tomás Brady. Picture credit: Ray McManus / SPORTSFILE

The 'mark' is to enter the GAA's rule book on January 1st, 2017.

Motion 41 passed at last month's congress in Carlow with 68% of the vote. The rule needed a two-thirds majority to pass and did so without major consultation with players.

Once it enters the GAA rulebook, the law shall read as: "When a player catches the ball cleanly from a Kick-Out without it touching the ground, on or past the 45m line nearest the KickOut point, he shall be awarded ‘a Mark’ by the Referee. The player awarded a ‘Mark’ shall have the options of (a) Taking a free kick or (b) Playing on immediately."

Darragh Nelson, Bernard Brogan, Alan Brogan, Paul Flynn and Cian O'Sullivan celebrate winning the 2014 National League. Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Donall Farmer

The GAA also confirmed on Saturday afternoon that the Allianz Football League Division 1 semi-finals are to be scrapped from 2017. The semi-finals were re-introduced in 2012 to the National League.

On only one occasion has a team from outside the top two of Division One won the league. That happened in 2014 when Dublin finished fourth but defeated Cork in the Final.