National Forum

Hurling League Finals

(Oldest Posts First)

I see Wicklow captain is pushing for the GAA to make a weekend out of the hurling finals, the same as they do for the football and I think he is a 100% right why is the football league important enough for Croke park but yet the hurling is not?

I think the hurling finals being played in croke park or Thurles would be good for counties such as Wicklow.

WW9 (Wicklow) - Posts: 109 - 04/03/2019 11:49:50    2170051

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Be careful what you wish for or we 'll all end up in Cork every year. The GAA will say this is a great chance to have a wonderful weekend every year in Cork. I'd be fine with that..Corks a great place but I know you guys will be spitting nails if you've to drive 3 hours

bloodyban (Limerick) - Posts: 1156 - 04/03/2019 12:49:17    2170077

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Replying To WW9:  "I see Wicklow captain is pushing for the GAA to make a weekend out of the hurling finals, the same as they do for the football and I think he is a 100% right why is the football league important enough for Croke park but yet the hurling is not?

I think the hurling finals being played in croke park or Thurles would be good for counties such as Wicklow."
I get where the Wicklow captain is coming from. When you look at the amount of hurling matches played in Croke Park, its actually quite a small number, which isn't a great return for a stadium whose primary function is to promote Gaelic Games.

However, in fairness, when it comes to the league, football has way higher attendances, which would make Croke Park a more viable option. When was the last time there was there an attendance of more than 30,000 at a hurling league final? In recent history, league finals have struggles to break the 20k mark (2018 final: 17,600, 2017: 16,000, 2016: 19,500, etc). Would the attendance numbers be improved by playing the div 2 and 3 finals on same day? Maybe a little, but not a significant amount, unfortunately. A crowd of that size can create a decent atmosphere in some place like Nowlan Park. Thurles would be okay for it, but in a place like Croke Park, the crowd would be lost. Having the games there might actually detract from the occasion, it'd be like playing in an empty stadium. The nature of the hurling league, particularly with the new championship structure, is that it now peters out, rather than builds to a finale.

That said playing the league finals as double headers over a weekend isn't a bad idea (if they're played on a pitch that won't cut up after one games, its still only March).

Marlon_JD (Tipperary) - Posts: 1732 - 04/03/2019 15:53:40    2170161

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Replying To Marlon_JD:  "I get where the Wicklow captain is coming from. When you look at the amount of hurling matches played in Croke Park, its actually quite a small number, which isn't a great return for a stadium whose primary function is to promote Gaelic Games.

However, in fairness, when it comes to the league, football has way higher attendances, which would make Croke Park a more viable option. When was the last time there was there an attendance of more than 30,000 at a hurling league final? In recent history, league finals have struggles to break the 20k mark (2018 final: 17,600, 2017: 16,000, 2016: 19,500, etc). Would the attendance numbers be improved by playing the div 2 and 3 finals on same day? Maybe a little, but not a significant amount, unfortunately. A crowd of that size can create a decent atmosphere in some place like Nowlan Park. Thurles would be okay for it, but in a place like Croke Park, the crowd would be lost. Having the games there might actually detract from the occasion, it'd be like playing in an empty stadium. The nature of the hurling league, particularly with the new championship structure, is that it now peters out, rather than builds to a finale.

That said playing the league finals as double headers over a weekend isn't a bad idea (if they're played on a pitch that won't cut up after one games, its still only March)."
Yea and realistic I knew croke park wasn't a viable option but for the player and supporters it'd be nice to make a day out of it, such as 2A and 2B on the same day in smeple stadium or nowlan park, but instead no it is being played in Monaghan and not even in the county grounds, very unfair on both sets of players I think

WW9 (Wicklow) - Posts: 109 - 04/03/2019 17:13:36    2170183

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Replying To WW9:  "Yea and realistic I knew croke park wasn't a viable option but for the player and supporters it'd be nice to make a day out of it, such as 2A and 2B on the same day in smeple stadium or nowlan park, but instead no it is being played in Monaghan and not even in the county grounds, very unfair on both sets of players I think"
More lip service from GAA, every football county gets at least 7 national league games but hurlers only get five.....if they are effectively merging Div 1A and Div 1B to create two equal groups with q finals etc then why can't they do the same for hurling as while Antrim, Westmeath and Kerry in 2A are the best teams there isn't much between Mayo, Meath, London , Wicklow, Derry , Down, Kildare etc....

You could argue that the likes of Derry, Down, Wicklow would be more competitive with Kerry, Antrim etc than the likes of Offaly, Laois etc would be to Tipp, Kilkenny etc

You could then ensure most counties get at least six games, they remain 'in' the league with a chance of a q final up until the last matches and you could play the three league finals as a triple header in Croker or Thurles but as usual the suits in Croker don't give a [email protected] about anything outside the top 10 teams in hurling mainly due to 'resistance' from county boards who want the hurling out if the way as soon as possible so it won't impact club football

No reason why when they are re-jigging the hurling leagues to help the top table they do the same for the rest of us

PaudieSull1 (Down) - Posts: 694 - 04/03/2019 17:45:23    2170191

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Replying To WW9:  "Yea and realistic I knew croke park wasn't a viable option but for the player and supporters it'd be nice to make a day out of it, such as 2A and 2B on the same day in smeple stadium or nowlan park, but instead no it is being played in Monaghan and not even in the county grounds, very unfair on both sets of players I think"
Ah, fair point, I've just seen the div 2 and 3 final venues here: http://hoganstand.com/Article/Index/296414

Yeah, given that context, it does highlight the problem a bit more acutely. As it stands, the 2A final between Kerry and Westmeath is being played in Ennis, then 2B final (Wicklow v Derry) played on the same day in Inniskeen/Monaghan. It'd be good to know the reasoning behind these schedule/venue choices. I know they want to get these venues somewhere thats equal distance for both counties, but they seem to go by geographical location, rather than how to actually get there.

It would make sense to play the 2A and 2B finals as a double header (same for div 3) in a higher profile ground, try and make it more of an occasion for the teams involved, rather then just getting these games out of the way. But given that these are being played in early March, what pitch would be best suited to playing a double header, given how most pitches cut up around this time of year? Or given the 4 counties in the Division 2 finals, what location would suit the 4 counties involved? Tullamore or Mullingar maybe? Given you have Kerry are at one end of the country, and Derry at the very other end, someone's going to have to travel further.

Marlon_JD (Tipperary) - Posts: 1732 - 04/03/2019 18:45:16    2170212

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