Friday 23 March 2018

O'Neill hopes new structure will stabilise hurling league

Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

THE GAA continued its consultation process regarding the format of next year's hurling league last night, with Liam O'Neill hopeful the new structure would provide stability for the competition.

The league has been subject to constant change in the last decade and, so far, three different proposals have been put forward for the 2014 competition.

Croke Park officials met with counties who would be outside of the top 12 under Michael Burns' plan in a bid to thrash out the finer points of next year's competition.

Carlow and Westmeath, who are unlikely to be in the top flight under the plan, are expected to submit a joint proposal, but O'Neill warned that a decision had to be made at Central Council's meeting on November 16.

"We can keep on getting proposals, but at some stage you have to make a decision. If Carlow and Westmeath join what about the two below them? And if they join what about the two below them again.

"There is a cut off point at some stage. Central Council will make that decision.

"At this stage, our ambition would be to have the league structure set up and it would be great if it lasted a while."

O'Neill was speaking at the launch of the GAA's National Games Development Conference.

Croke Park will host the Liberty Insurance-sponsored conference which will run on Friday and Saturday, January 11-12, with up to 700 delegates expected to attend.

Derry's Joe Brolly will make the final key note address, while Eamonn Ryan from the Cork ladies football team and Paudie O'Neill (Clare) are also among the speakers.

This year's conference is titled 'Inspiring Children: Fostering a love of Gaelic games'. Tickets, priced at €50, are available at or from 01 8658625.

Irish Independent

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport