On Wednesday evening, Nowlan Park welcomed players, offers and representatives from all twelve senior hurling clubs in Kilkenny for the launch of the St. Canice’s Credit Union Senior Hurling League.
The first round of games for 2017 get underway in three weeks time.
Chairman of Kilkenny County Board, Ned Quinn, got the proceedings underway around 8.30pm.
The sponsorship of the hurling championship by St. Canice’s Credit Union began back in 1991 and has been extended for another three year term covering the league, championship and Byrne Cup.
“It would be hard to find a better for fit for our organisation, which is community based”, said Quinn of the sponsorship, “for clubs in every parish in the county and St. Canice’s Credit Union, which is community based as well. It’s a county-wide Credit Union now so it’s ideal for the GAA in Kilkenny.
“The senior hurling championship was first played for in 1887 and all these years later it is still the blue ribbon of Kilkenny club hurling.”
“It’s the one competition, cup, trophy, championship, that every club aspires to win. It has retained its pre-eminence all the way down through the years. I would hear all our current and former All-Ireland winners, those guys with pockets of All-Ireland medals saying if their club hadn’t won a senior championship, they would swap all of them for one senior club championship medal.”
“That’s the status of the St. Canice’s Credit Union Senior Hurling Championship.”
The Credit Union have expanded the activation of their sponsorship this season, introducing a Man of the Match award for every game in the league, followed by an overall Player of the Season award on conclusion of the campaign.
The Tom Walsh Cup will also go on public display in the window of St. Canice’s Credit Union on High Street, Kilkenny, when the final two teams have been decided.
This year’s St. Canice’s Credit Union Senior Hurling League get underway on the weekend of 21/22/23 April with all twelve sides in action over the three days.
Bennettsbridge GAA grounds play host to the curtainraiser meeting of Clara and Danesfort at 7pm on Friday 21 April.
On Saturday evening Erins Own and Mullinavat meet at Danesfort (5pm throw-in) while Carrickshock and Rower Inistioge head to Thomastown for their Group A encounter at 7pm.
On Sunday afternoon at 2pm, O’Loughlin Gaels and St. Martins go head to head at Canon Kearns Park; at 4pm Bennettsbridge and James Stephens meet in Clara while John Lock Park hosts the final Group B encounter of the weekend with Dicksboro and Ballyhale Shamrocks take to the pitch at 7pm.