THE CORK minor hurling and football teams have been handed tough draws in this year's championship.
The competition won't be played until October, where the Cork footballers, All-Ireland champions in 2019, must face Kerry, the Munster champions last summer, and the hurlers are taking on Clare and then Limerick if they progress.
The games will be played on a straight knockout format, which makes it especially tough on the footballers, who are away to Kerry. Bobbie O'Dwyer guided the Rebels to ultimate glory last summer, bridging a 19-year gap, but only after two losses to the Kingdom in Munster.
The minor hurlers are managed by Donal Óg Cusack this season, with Tom Kenny, Seán Óg Ó hAilpín and Kieran 'Fraggie' Murphy also in the backroom. It's a loaded management team but they could be done after one game if they can't beat Clare at home.
Carrigtwohill's Noel Furlong is already in place as the bainisteoir in 2021, having coached the players coming through from development squads who turn 17 next year since they were U14.
Quarter-final 1: Kerry v Tipperary; Quarter-final 2: Cork v Clare.
Semi-final: Waterford v winner 1; Limerick v winner 2.
Quarter-final 1: Clare v Tipperary; Quarter-final 2: Limerick v Waterford.
Semi-final: Kerry v Cork; winner 1 v 2.
Dates and venues to be confirmed in due course.
Meanwhile, Rebel Óg Coaching have proposed to coordinate a revised games program for all clubs with teams from U8 to U11 in August and September.
Groups will be based geographically and matched according to numbers.
Clubs will be in groups of 4, where they will play each of the other three teams in their group, in each respective code. This will help limit the mixing of community groups while still providing some organised matches for the kids.
The following are our proposed dates:
Saturday, August 22, Hurling; Saturday, August 29, Football; Saturday, September 5, Hurling; Saturday, September 12, Football; Saturday, September 19, Hurling; Saturday, September 26, Football.
They will re-analyse the situation in mid-September and may allocate another round of fixtures for October.
The U8 and U9 games will start at 9.30am and the U10 and U11 games to start at 10.45am, which will allow clubs to run games across Saturday mornings in the younger age groups..
As the fixture format will be worked out and where numbers match up, the same clubs will play at all four age groups from U8-U11 or just at U8 and U10 level as is the case with a lot of clubs.