CONFIRMED – Dublin to hit the road in Leinster championship for first time since 2006
All-Ireland champions Dublin will make their first defence of Sam Maguire outside of Croke Park next summer when the reigning champions travel to Nowlan Park in Kilkenny in the Leinster championship.
Jim Gavin's side will meet the winners of Laois and Wicklow in Nowlan Park on Saturday June 4th and it will represent the first time since 2006 that the Dubs have played a championship match outside of GAA headquarters.
Nowlan Park has been chosen on the basis that it has 17,000 seats from a 25,000 capacity, though Laois had hoped that O'Moore Park would have been selected if they see off the challenge of Wicklow in the first round tie.
A motion to play the quarter final at Nowlan Park was passed when 22 of the 28 delegates present voted in its favour.
Leinster senior hurling champions Kilkenny will play Dublin or Wexford in a semi-final on Saturday, June 11. If Dublin qualify for the semi-final the match will be in Portlaoise. If it is Wexford, the game will be in Wexford Park.
There will be 21 match days across the Leinster senior hurling and football championships in 2016, with Croke Park staging four days of action in the Leinster Championship next year.
The Laois v Wicklow SFC game will form a double header at O’Moore Park in Portlaoise with Louth v Carlow the curtain raiser on Saturday, May 14.
Another notable feature is the decision to play the Wexford footballers and hurlers as a double bill at Croke Park on May 29 – with the footballers meeting Kildare at 2pm and the hurlers meeting Dublin in a quarter final at 4pm.
It will be the first time the Model County have played senior championship hurling at Croke Park since 2007 when they were defeated by Kilkenny by 0-23 to 1-10 in an All-Ireland semi-final.