*David Fitzgerald is tackled by Darren O’Brien, Shane O’Donnell and Dara Walsh. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

There will be changes to the make up of the adult hurling championships with the exception of the senior grade while all of the adult hurling league formats will change for 2025.

At this week’s special structures meeting of Clare GAA, the revised report from the hurling review committee was adopted. The initial report included a changed format for the senior championship but following opposition to this expressed at a meeting back in November, the committee reviewed their recommendations and decided to recommend that the existing format for the Canon Hamilton cup competition remain as is with sixteen teams competing in four groups of four.

In the new proposal they have recommended doing away with the senior B championship and Monday’s meeting supported this despite a motion from Broadford which called for its retention.

Broadford delegate Danny Chaplin proposed that after the three group games the teams finishing in third and fourth places in the groups play for the senor B title. This would allow for four quarter final games, the losers of which would go on to play to avoid relegation. These games, he said, could take place alongside the senior championship quarter and semi-finals. This would provide more games for senior teams as the current proposal means that teams who fail to make the championship quarter finals would only be guaranteed three championship games.

Review group member, Martin Lynch from Newmarket-on-Fergus told the meeting that in all of their discussions with clubs there was no appetite for the senior B competition.

There was no support for the Broadford club proposal.

Tubber’s Andrew Monahan questioned the merit in confining the premier intermediate and the intermediate championships to ten teams. “The senior is in groups of four, why not the same for the intermediate. There are twelve evenly matched intermediate teams and this proposal would mean that two would be dropped to the next grade. The likelihood is that they will be promoted the next year. This will create a yo-yo up and down situation”.

Páraic Boland. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

Review committee chairman Padraic Boland said the committee felt that “eight teams in this championship would be too little and twelve just didn’t fit”.

Replying Andrew Monahan said, “we were victims of a group of five last year. We had a break of a month and then we had to play two championship games in three days. That won’t help any club”.

The revised recommendation from the review committee was carried on the proposal of Newmarket-on-Fergus’ Pat Keogh, seconded by Éire Óg’s Rory Hickey.

The structures for 2025 will be as follows:

Senior hurling championship: No change – four groups of 4
Premier intermediate: 10 teams in two groups of 5
Intermediate championship: 10 teams in two groups of 5
Junior A: 10 teams in two groups of 5
Premier Junior B: 10 teams;
Junior B: 10 teams
Premier Junior C: 8 teams
Junior C: 5 teams

League Formats for 2025

Div. 1: 16 Teams (Clare Cup)
Div. 2: 8 Teams
Div. 3: 8 Teams
Div. 4: 8 Teams
Div. 5: 8 Teams
Div. 6: 8 Teams
Div. 7: 8 Teams
Div. 8: T.B.C. (Remaining Teams to be divided into 2 groups)

Hurling Leagues:

Clare Cup: 16 teams in two groups of 8 (groups decided by open draw annually). Top 4 in each group qualify for quarter finals. Quarter final pairings are first in the two groups plays fourth h in the opposite respective group and second in each group plays third in the opposite respective group. First and second placed teams have home advantage for quarter finals. Semi-final pairings decided by open draw at neutral venue.
Bottom team in each group is relegated to Division 2.

Division 2: 8 Teams, top team qualifies for final, with second and third placed teams playing semi-final. Two teams in final are promoted with bottom two relegated for following year.

Divisions 3, 4, 5, 6 & 7: Eight teams in each group, follows same format

Division 8: remaining teams, split into two groups. Top two teams in each group qualify for semi-finals with two finalists promoted.

Teams final group placings at the end of the 2024 season will determine what divisions they will be in for the 2025 league. Group placings are determined after the final rounds of 2024 leagues and do not include semi-finals or finals. As new structures and groupings are proposed, no relegation or promotions apply in 2024 leagues.

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Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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