GAA Interpros survive for another year

Mark Poland tackles Munster's Graham Canty at the Athletic Grounds
Mark Poland tackles Munster's Graham Canty at the Athletic Grounds

The GAA's Interprovincial competitions will continue next Spring following a decision by the association's Central Council body on Saturday.

Falling spectator attendances have led to continuing doubts over the competition's future in recent times.

The GAA has also struggled to find a regular date in the sport's calendar for the Interpros.

However, the GAA said on Monday that the M Donnelly-sponsored competitions would be played in the Spring.

Then GAA president Christy Cooney admitted his own doubts about whether the competitions in football and hurling should continue after last year's Football decider in Armagh.

A healthy attendance turned up to the football final in Armagh last February but the competition is now a far cry from its halcyon days of the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s when huge crowds invariably watched the St Patrick's Day Finals at Croke Park.

Meanwhile, the draws for the Christy Ring, Nicky Rackard and Lory Meagher Cups have been made.

Derry will host Wicklow in their Christy Ring Cup opener on 4 May with Down at home to Kerry and Armagh away to Meath on the same day in the first round.

Christy Ring Cup draw

4 May

First round

Derry v Wicklow

Down v Kerry

Meath v Armagh

Kildare v Mayo

11 May

Round 2A

round 1 winner v round 1 winner

round 1 winner v round 1 winner

Round 2B

round 1 loser v round 1 loser

round 1 loser v round 1 loser

18 May

Quarter-Finals

round 2A loser v round 2B loser

round 2A loser v round 2B loser

25 May

Semi-Finals

round 2A winner v quarter-final winner

round 2A winner v quarter-final winner

8 June

Final

Nicky Rackard Cup

4 May

Round 1

Tyrone v Louth

Roscommon v Sligo

Donegal bye

Monaghan bye

Lory Meagher Cup

4 May

Round 1

Warwickshire v Longford

Leitrim v Fermanagh

11 May

Round 1

Longford v Leitrim

Fermanagh v Warwickshire

18 May

Round 3

Warwickshire v Leitrim

Longford v Fermanagh

8 June

Final