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'No issue' for Kildare hurlers over switch to Hawkfield

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Kildare hurling manager Brian Lawlor insists he has 'no issue' with his side being fixed to play at the same time as the county’s footballers on Sunday.

Kildare hurling manager Brian Lawlor insists he has 'no issue' with his side being fixed to play at the same time as the county’s footballers on Sunday.

SPORTSFILE

Kildare hurling manager Brian Lawlor insists he has 'no issue' with his side being fixed to play at the same time as the county’s footballers on Sunday.

Kildare hurling manager Brian Lawlor insists he has "no issue" with his side being fixed to play at the same time as the county's footballers on Sunday.

Jason Ryan's team, which will soon be boosted by the return of Daniel Flynn from Australia, will take over St Conleth's Park in Newbridge for their O'Byrne Cup semi-final with DIT, while the hurlers - in Kehoe Cup action against Maynooth University - will move to the Kildare centre of excellence in Hawkfield on the edge of the town.

Meath are in a similar boat but their hurlers will play as a curtain-raiser to the footballers' clash with Dublin in Pairc Tailteann. Both Kildare games throw in at 2pm.

However, Lawlor has no issue with the reigning Christy Ring champions being shifted away from the county grounds.

"I kind of expected it," said the Tipperary native. "To be honest, St Conleth's isn't ideal for a double-header. The dressing rooms are quite small and you might have to leave a big gap between games."

Lawlor went on to explain that the Hawkfield venue is in some ways better suited to hurling.

"I have no issue with it really. We're on pitch one. Last year we had a bit of a problem in that we were on pitch four as pitch one was getting work done on it and the supporters who were there were getting wet. But pitch one is a big wide pitch, wider than St Conleth's and it's a good surface.

"And there's a stand there too for people who want to come and watch. Look, a double-header would be ideal but the last thing you'd want is for the weather to turn and maybe for the game to be cancelled. We train in Hawkfield all the time so it doesn't really affect us."

Elsewhere, the Laois hurlers will have to plan without long-serving defender Brian Campion after he brought an end to his inter-county career.

The Rathdowney-Errill man made his debut in 2005.

Irish Independent