October 17, 2021

Wolfe Tones GAC

An Caisleán Glas

GAA announce revised Master Fixtures Calendar for 2021

The GAA today released its updated Master Fixtures Calendar for the 2021 season.

The inter-county season will run from the weekend of May 8th/9th with the start of the Allianz Hurling League, to the weekend of August 28/29 when the All-Ireland Football Final will be played.

County and Provincial Club Championships will be played in the months of September, October, November, and December with the All-Ireland Club Finals scheduled for February 2022.

The inter-county fixtures programme will be run off in a 20-week period and guarantees a minimum of five games for each Senior County Football and Hurling team with all bar three counties guaranteed six games in hurling.

2021 Allianz Football League

The Allianz Football League will from the weekend of May 15/16 to the weekend of June 19/20 with Divisions split into North and South as originally planned in December.

Four teams will be in each group based on geography with three Round Robin games per team. The top two in each divisional group will advance to the league semi-finals followed by a league final.

The bottom two in each divisional group will play relegation semi-finals with the two losers of those matches relegated. The bottom teams in Division 4 will play a Shield semi-final and final.

League finals will only be played on June 19/20 if counties involved are not playing in the championship the following weekend. If they are, then joint winners will be declared for Division 1 and joint winners and promotion for Divisions 2, 3, and 4.

London will not be participating in the 2021 Allianz Football League.

2021 Allianz Hurling League

Divisions 1 and 2 of the Allianz Hurling League will run from the weekend of May 8/9 to the weekend of June 12/13. Division 3 of the Allianz Hurling League will run from the weekend of May 15/16 to the weekend of June 19/20.

There will be no Division 1 Hurling League quarter-finals, semi-finals, or Final played. There will either be joint winners for 2021, or or if the teams that win Div 1A and Div 1B meet in the Championship, this will double as a League Final.

The Division 1 Hurling League Relegation Play-off will be played as curtain raiser to Senior Hurling Semi Final in August.

Divisions 2 and 3 will not have League Finals either. The top team in each Division will be crowned champions. The bottom team in Divisions 2A, 2B, and 3A will be relegated.

British based teams will not be involved in the Allianz Hurling Leagues this year. London and London and Warwickshire will start 2022 in Divisions 2B and 3A respectively; Lancashire in 3B.

2021 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship

The 2021 All-Ireland SFC will be played as a straight knock-out competition from the provincial series forward. There will be no Qualifiers and New York and London will not be involved.

There will be no Tailteann Cup in 2021.

2021 Liam MacCarthy Cup

There will be a provincial knock-out championship with back-door qualifiers like there was in 2020, but now also with the introduction of relegation to the Joe McDonagh Cup.

There will be a preliminary round in the qualifiers between the two defeated quarter-final team in Leinster with the winners progressing to Round 1 of the Qualifiers and the losers relegated to the Joe McDonagh Cup in 2022.

Competing counties

Munster: Limerick, Waterford, Tipperary, Clare, Cork.

Leinster: Kilkenny, Galway, Wexford, Dublin, Laois, Antrim.

2021 Joe McDonagh Cup

There will be no semi-finals in the Joe McDonagh Cup which is the only change from what was proposed in December.

The Joe McDonagh Cup winners are promoted in 2021 but do not have a back door into the Liam MacCarthy Cup.

The Joe McDonagh Cup will be played played on Saturday, July 17, the same day as the Leinster SHC Final, and will be broadcast live on TV.

The six competing teams will be split into two Round Robin groups with each team playing one home and one away match. The top team in each group will play the runner up in the other group in the semi-finals with the bottom team in each group playing a relegation final.

If Kerry win the 2021 Joe McDonagh Cup they will play in Leinster in 2022 and replace the team relegated from the Leinster Championship this year.

Competing counties: Kerry, Westmeath, Meath, Carlow, Kildare, Down.

2021 Christy Ring, Nickey Rackard, and Lory Meagher Cups

The only change to what was announced in December is that British based teams will not be involved. The British based teams will begin the 2022 season in the same Cup they were due to play in in 2021. The three competitions will be played on the following basis.

Two sides to the draw:

Group A – 3 teams drawn on an open draw basis (each team plays 2 games)

Group B – Two teams play in one fixture

Quarter-Final/Relegation play-off: Bottom team from A v Loser of B (loser relegated – exception: Meagher Cup)

Semi Finals: Top 2 teams from Group A are drawn to play against Winner of Group B and Winner of Quarter Final/Relegation play-off

2020 Minor and U-20 Hurling Championships and Minor Football Championships.

Details will be finalised when there is clarity on a return to training/play date.

2021 Minor and U-20 Football and Hurling Championships

Details will be finalised when there is clarity on a return to training/play date.

2021 Club Window Provisions

It is important to note that the GAA still does not have permission to return to club training or games with only training in pods of 14 allowed in the North.

However, the calendar is set up in such a way that:

  • Club competitions with county players can take place as County teams exit the Championships (in football, teams start exiting from the end of June; in Hurling July 10th) [RESTRICTIONS PERMITTING]
  • From August 1st, all Counties bar All Ireland Semi-Finalists in Football and Hurling, and the teams in the Div 1 Hurling Relegation play off, will be free to stage club competitions with county players. [RESTRICTIONS PERMITTING]
  • Additionally, the commencement of the Provincial Club Championships will be delayed until Mid-November.
  • Provinces have been requested to ensure Clubs from teams in the senior inter-county All Ireland Semi-finals and Finals will not be involved in the earliest round of the relevant Provincial Championship (where possible).
  • Senior Provincial Club Championship will most likely start in or around the weekend of Nov 20/21 (dates to be finalized by each Provincial Council).
  • All Ireland Senior Club Finals are provisionally scheduled for the weekend of February 12th/13th 2022.

This article originally appeared on GAA.ie

You can download the Master Fixtures schedule here