Bord Gáis Energy also revealed its brand new team of ambassadors for 2014. The line-up includes: Colm Galvin and Tony Kelly (Clare), Alan Cadogan (Cork), Jason Forde (Tipperary), Johnny Glynn (Galway), Jack Guiney (Wexford), Dan Morrissey (Limerick), Jake Dillon (Waterford), Kevin Kelly (Kilkenny), and Cian O’Callaghan (Dublin).
TG4 will broadcast nine games over the course of the 2014 Championship and similar to last season, fans can nominate their Man of the Match using the #LaochBGE hashtag during the live match broadcasts.
The Bord Gáis Energy Team of the Year Awards programme is set to return in October following its successful introduction last season. Nominations and winners will be selected by Bord Gáis Energy Sports Ambassador Ger Cunningham, Micheál Ó Domhnaill of TG4 and Galway’s former U-21 All-Ireland winner Joe Canning
Speaking ahead of the launch Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, Liam Ó Néill said: “The onset of the Bord Gáis Energy GAA Hurling U21 All-Ireland Championship signals the start of summer for many hurling followers and I look forward to the roll out of the competition in conjunction with sponsors Bord Gáis Energy, for the sixth consecutive year.
“It’s a competition that never fails to excite and the regular flow of midweek evening games have become part of the staple sporting diet for so many. I wish Bord Gáis Energy every success with their activity around the games especially with their new microsite and I look forward to seeing more impressive young talent coming to the surface in the weeks ahead on the field of play.”
Sponsorship & Brand Manager at Bord Gáis Energy Irene Gowing commented, “We are proud to sponsor this exceptional competition for the sixth year and are really excited to get the games underway tomorrow night.
“In 2014 Bord Gáis Energy Rewards Club customers will once again have the chance to become part of the action as they get the opportunity to present Man of the Match awards live on TV, carry the Cross of Cashel trophy onto the pitch on All-Ireland final day and win match tickets and VIP trips to the All-Ireland Final and the Team of the Year Awards in October.
“This year we are also introducing a new microsite. www.BGEu21.ie will be the hub for all things to do with the championship including news, fixtures and latest results. Fans will also be able to see the Bord Gáis Energy Ambassadors’ exclusive video blogs which give a unique insight into the commitment, training and preparation of players at this elite level”.
Ger Cunningham, Sports Ambassador at Bord Gáis Energy added, “The U-21 Championship never fails to deliver in terms of excitement and drama. Who can forget the exceptional moments of last season as Wexford came out on top in Leinster, Antrim shocked us all to reach a first ever All-Ireland final at this level and ultimately Clare rounded off a terrific year for the Banner County by taking home the Cross of Cashel trophy.
“Dublin and Laois get the ball rolling tomorrow night and, as we saw in 2013, anything can happen in this competition. It’s a hugely exciting time for all involved and we wish the players, managers, selectors, back room teams, county boards and supporters every success over the coming months”.
Bord Gáis Energy GAA Hurling
U-21 All-Ireland Championship 2014 Fixtures
Bord Gáis Energy Leinster Hurling U-21 Championship:
1. Westmeath v Carlow TBC Cusack Park, Mullingar
2. Laois v Dublin 28 May 2014 Parnell Park, Dublin
3. Wexford v Kilkenny 4 June 2014 Nowlan Park, Kilkenny
4. Offaly BYE
5. 1 v 2 25 June 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)
6. 3 v Offaly 25 June 2014 TBC
Leinster Final 5 v 6 9 July 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)
Bord Gáis Energy Munster Hurling U-21 Championship:
1. Clare v Limerick 4 June 2014 Gaelic Ground (LIVE TG4)
2. 1 v Tipperary 16 July 2014 Cusack Park or Gaelic Grounds (LIVE TG4)
3. Cork v Waterford 17 July 2014 Walsh Park, Waterford (LIVE TG4)
Munster Final 2 v 3 30 July 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)
Bord Gáis Energy Ulster Hurling U-21 Championship:
1. Shield Winners v Armagh 9 July 2014 TBC
2. Down v 1 16 July 2014 TBC
3. Derry v Antrim 16 July 2014 TBC
Ulster Final 2 v 3 23 July 2014 TBC
Bord Gáis Energy GAA Hurling U-21 All-Ireland Championship:
All Ireland Semi Finals
1. Galway v Leinster 23 August 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)
2. Munster v Ulster 23 August 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)
All Ireland Finals
‘B’ Final 13 September 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)
1 v 2 13 September 2014 TBC (LIVE TG4)