A busy year for the Rebels on the hurling front came at a cost

A busy year for the Rebels on the hurling front came at a cost
Eoin Roche in action against Kevin Desmond of Dublin during the All-Ireland U17 final. Picture: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

HOW many boards spent over €1m on their inter-county teams this season?

Last year there were six with Mayo topping the millionaire charts on €1.6m followed by Dublin, Cork, Galway, Tipperary and Roscommon, who were a surprise inclusion.

Hovering just below the million mark were the likes of Kerry and Donegal, but the Kingdom have already reported that they, too, passed the landmark figure in 2017 which should lead to an increase in millionaire club membership.

The Rossies will more than likely drop out but they could be replaced by Waterford on the basis of their hurlers qualifying for the All-Ireland final.

It's the time of year for annual conventions when county treasurers outline the season's activities and delegates attending the Cork gathering at Páirc Uí Chaoimh heard the news on Sunday afternoon.

They were informed that the total cost of preparing Cork teams came to almost €1.75, an increase of nearly €370,000 on the 2016 figure.

Part of the reasons were the successes of the county hurlers in winning Munster and reaching the All-Ireland semi-finals and the minor and U17 hurlers' achievements in reaching their respective All-Ireland finals, as well.

Travel and overnight costs more than doubled to over €120,000 while players' travelling expenses rose by €115,000 to in excess of €415,000, due to an increase in the mileage rate from 50 cents a mile to 65 as agreed by Croke Park officials at the start of the year.

The catering bill was up, too, by €50,000 to over €300,000 while other costs, including medical, gear and equipment came to €620,000, up by €140,000.

Overall costs were helped by sizeable contributions from Croke Park, just shy of €190,000, and Munster Council, who chipped in with €72,000, while the Chill Insurance sponsorship brought in €400,000 and O'Neill's gear sponsorship came to €144,000.

There was an increase in county championship gate receipts of over €180,00 from 2016 to nearly €1.2m, while the county's national league share came to just under €110,000 in hurling and almost €43,000 in football.

A whole host of Cork schools will also be on tenterhooks as they await the quarter-final draws in the Munster colleges senior championships, the Dr Harty Cup in hurling and the Corn Uí Mhuirí in football.

They will be held on Wednesday night and involve St Colman's, Fermoy, Midleton CBS, CBC and Gaelcholáiste Mhuire along with the holders, Our Lady's Templemore, Árdscoil Rís, Thurles CBS and John the Baptist Community School.

As St Colman's were one of the four group winners there's the possibility of a Cork derby against either Midleton CBS, Christians or the Mon, who squeezed through on scoring difference.

They finished on four points, the same as Thurles and Nenagh, who lost out.  Thurles topped the section with a points' difference of +23 compared to the Mon's +12 and Nenagh's +4.

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