GAA Inter-provincials: football and hurling competitions on 10-11 December

Ulster football manager Pete McGrath
Pete McGrath will again manage the Ulster footballers this year

The GAA's Inter-provincials football and hurling competitions will take place on the weekend of 10-11 December.

Parnell Park will stage the football competition the semi-finals on 10 December with Ulster facing Munster and Leinster up against holders Connacht.

The final will take place at the north Dublin venue on 11 December.

Nenagh will stage the hurling competition with Munster taking on Ulster and Leinster facing Connacht in the semi-finals on 10 December.

The competition did not take place last year after bad weather in early December prevented the competitions taking place at Pairc Esler in Newry and Pearse Stadium in Galway.

Over the last couple of the decades, the former Railway Cup competitions have become something of a problem child for the GAA.

Amid waning spectator interest and the difficulty of finding a suitable date in an increasingly crowded fixtures calendar, there have been some calls for the competition to be discontinued.

However, GAA president Aogan O Fearghail said at Thursday's competition launch at Croke Park that he was "delighted" to see the return of the series.

"It is a championship that can trace its roots back to the original Railway Shield competitions which were held first as far back as 1905," said the GAA president.

"They are special and unique. There has always been an attraction to the sight of the best players in a province playing with instead of against each other.

"Not every inter-county player will be fortunate to win an All-Ireland medal or be recognised with an All-Star award.

"But the Inter-Provincial competitions have a rich heritage of acknowledging outstanding talents from every corner of Ireland via the Provincial teams."

Fermanagh boss Pete McGrath will again manage the Ulster football team this year while Terence McNaughton is taking charge of the Ulster hurlers.

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