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Páirc Uí Chaoimh opening delayed

Thursday, 15th June, 2017 9:27am

It was confirmed this week that neither the Munster football or hurling finals would be played in the stadium as had been expected, as it will not be ready in time for either match date.

The Cork footballers were one-point winners over Tipperary on Saturday, setting up a Munster Final clash with Kerry on 2 July. Although the fixture was down to be played as the opener for the new stadium, the Cork County Board has since confirmed Páirc Uí Chaoimh will not be ready to host the game, which will now be played in Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney instead. The Cork footballers have not won Munster Final in Killarney since 1995.

The board was informed on Monday that the scheduled handover date of 18 June would not be met with commissioning works to be completed. These works are expected to be finished by 7 July with the first game in the new stadium set to take place in mid-July.

Cork County chairman, Ger Lane said: “Clearly, we are disappointed but we want everything to be pristine before the stadium hosts its first major games. We want to be certain that all the expectations for this tremendous new facility will be fully met.”

The Cork hurlers will play Waterford in the Munster Semi-Final on Sunday. Had they won, Cork were scheduled to play Clare – already through to the final after beating Limerick – in Páirc Uí Chaoimh on 9 July but that will now take place elsewhere, regardless of Sunday’s outcome.

It is hoped that the All-Ireland Quarter-Finals may be the opening fixtures for the stadium, although the double-header has been played in Semple Stadium every year since 2011; while Croke Park will not be available that weekend as U2 play the stadium on 22 July.

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