Champions Dublin and Limerick to launch RTÉ's live coverage of league action
The All-Ireland hurling and football champions Limerick and Dublin will get RTé's new live Allianz League coverage under way on successive weekends in February.
It follows an agreement with the GAA and current rights holder for Saturday night league matches, eir Sport, which will see the national broadcaster show four league games live this spring.
That agreement was hammered out as part of discussions over coverage of the Rugby World Cup in Japan later this year where RTÉ agreed a sub-licensing deal with eir to show 14 games, including all of Ireland's games, which must, under regulation, be free-to-air.
Limerick hurlers' first home league game, against Tipperary on Saturday, February 2, will start the coverage with Dublin footballers' visit to Tralee to play Kerry seven days later also on the schedule.
Dublin's home fixture with Mayo in Croke Park on February 23 is also thought to be part of the four-game spring package. Eir is to remain as the host broadcaster and will also show these games live. Eir will show up to two games every weekend until the end of March.
A new five-year TV rights deal was agreed in 2017 and will remain in place until that expires in 2022.
Further changes to RTé's GAA coverage are expected in 2019 with Dónal óg Cusack and Kevin McStay expected to return as analysts.
Meanwhile, the Ladies Gaelic Football Association have confirmed that Dublin will play double-headers with their male counterparts in Croke Park in February.
They face Donegal on February 2, prior to Jim Gavin's side meeting Galway, while their game with Mayo will precede the Dublin-Mayo clash on February 23.