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Ballygunner's Dessie Hutchinson pictured at the launch of the AIB Club Championships.
Ballygunner's Dessie Hutchinson pictured at the launch of the AIB Club Championships.

AIB Club Championships launched

AIB teamed up with three-time winner with Corofin and former Galway footballer, Gary Sice; two-time winner with Cuala and Dublin Hurler; Sean Moran, Dessie Hutchinson, Ballygunner hurler; Oisin O’Neill, Crossmaglen Rangers and Armagh footballer to launch their 29th season as sponsor of the AIB GAA All Ireland Club Championships.

AIB also celebrated their 7th season backing the All Ireland Camogie Club Championships alongside Niamh O’Callaghan, Sarsfields and Cork camogie player and Ann Downey, former St Paul’s and Lisdowney camogie player and former Kilkenny camogie manager at today’s launch.

AIB is proud of its longstanding relationship with the GAA, entering its 29th year supporting Ireland’s #Toughest Club Championships of them all in support of players, clubs and communities across the island of Ireland as they battle to be crowned All Ireland Champions. This year for the first time, the AIB GAA All Ireland Senior Club Championships will take place in Croke Park in January as opposed to St. Patrick’s Day.

With the crucial provincial championship stages rapidly approaching, all five players in attendance at today’s launch are in the final stages of preparation for the games that will bring them one step closer to being crowned provincial champions and the opportunity to battle on for the AIB GAA All Ireland Club Champions title.

Waterford’s Ballygunner will face Clare’s Sixmilebridge in the Munster SHC Quarter-Final on Sunday, 3rd November while Dublin’s Cuala will go head-to-head with St Mullins of Carlow in the Leinster SHC Quarter-Final.

In the SFC, Armagh’s Crossmaglen Rangers will play Clontibret O’Neill’s of Monaghan in the Ulster Quarter-Final. Reigning All-Ireland champions Corofin will have to do it all again in the Galway County Final following their dramatic last gasp draw with Tuam Stars.

After an impressive performance against title-holders Inniscarra, Sarsfields claimed the Cork Senior Camogie crown. They will now face Tipperary’s Drum & Inch in the Munster Championship semi-final.

Denis O’Callaghan, Head of AIB Retail Banking, emphasised the importance of the AIB GAA Club Championship: “AIB is thrilled to be backing the Junior, Intermediate and Senior Club Championships for the 29th year, as well as the Camogie Club Championships for the 7th year. The Club Championships are the epitome of what GAA is all about – competition, spirit and community. GAA clubs are at the heart of towns across Ireland and we at AIB are proud to champion the players that give it their all on and off the pitch to represent their home clubs in one of the toughest club tournaments there is.”

Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, John Horan said, _“The AIB GAA Club Championships are the epitome of what so many of our members dream of. It is the Club that defines us and makes us who we are. To achieve success, at any level, with your Club is something that creates memories to last a lifetime and it is the pursuit of that success - in honour of the Club and the People that we represent - that means so much to our Communities. Whether they are Players or Supporters, the Club Championship is a place where something special can happen. I wish all involved the very best on this epic journey at senior, intermediate and junior levels.

"I would also like to acknowledge AIB for their long-standing support across both Club and County. We are delighted with the partnership and look forward to the years to come of working together to strengthen the GAA even further.”

Speaking at the launch Uachtarán an Cumann Camógaíochta, Kathleen Woods said: “We are delighted to enter our seventh year with AIB as sponsors of the Provincial and All-Ireland Camogie Club Championships.

"AIB have been wonderful supporters of our Club Championships over the last number of years, shining a spotlight on our wonderful clubs which is where the journey for all of our players begins.

"Our AIB Provincial Championships are already well underway with some thrilling matches already across all four provinces We would like to wish all Clubs involved the very best for the remainder of the season as they battle for All-Ireland glory.”

The AIB GAA Club Championships provide an opportunity for the thousands of players, coaches and volunteers who enable the playing and development of GAA in communities nationwide to shine as they seek to obtain All-Ireland Champions status for their clubs and communities. These games bring the toughest players to the forefront as they compete for All-Ireland glory.

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