Friday, February 08, 2019

THERE will be a new structure to the Carlow club hurling championships for 2019 with the formation of a new senior A grade.

The new structure has come as a result of discussions following last October’s Hurling Forum which assessed the health of the game in the county and the Hurling Forum Action Plan which was distributed to club’s at December’s county convention.

At last Thursday evening’s Carlow county board meeting in Netwatch Cullen Park, it was agreed Mount Leinster Rangers, St Mullins, Ballinkillen and Naomh Eoin will play in the senior championship.

Mount Leinster Rangers, St Mullins and Naomh Eoin will also field teams in the senior A championship while the intermediate championship will comprise of Palatine, Carlow Town, St Patrick’s, Burren Rangers, Naomh Bríd, Ballinkillen and Bagenalstown Gaels. The junior championship will be made up of Mount Leinster Rangers, Naomh Eoin, Carlow Town, Naomh Bríd and possibly a second Bagenalstown Gaels team.

An elaborate games plan was distributed to delegates during the meeting. In it are plans to play the football leagues Divisions 1-4 at the weekends with the football Division 5 games to be played on Wednesdays.

It was proposed the Bolger Cup All County Hurling League for club players who are not playing with the county will be fixed for Tuesday nights while three weekends were put aside for clubs to play in the Kilkenny Hurling Leagues.

The decision to play Bolger Cup hurling on Tuesday nights exclusively was met with disapproval by Ballinkillen’s Tommy Dowling.

“Hurling on Tuesdays? Why not at weekends,” he asked. “Are we saying hurling is second after football,” he said.

“This is the best formation,” replied chairman, Sean Campion.

It was agreed that if a club won the intermediate hurling championship and wanted to by-pass playing in the senior A championship, they would be allowed to progress directly to senior while there will be no relegation from the senior A championship.

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