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Saturday 7 December 2019

Green light for Lilies' trip

NORTHBOUND: Cian O’Neill. Pic: Sportsfile
NORTHBOUND: Cian O’Neill. Pic: Sportsfile

KILDARE'S All-Ireland SFC qualifier with Antrim in Corrigan Park has been given the green light by the GAA.

There had been some speculation that Antrim would lose home advantage for Saturday week's game after Croke park indicated the fixture was "subject to inspection and safety certification."

Corrigan Park is the home ground of the St John's club in West Belfast and holds a capacity of 2,100.

It means that Saturday's game will be an all-ticket affair with a throw-in time of 3.0.

Both the Antrim hurlers and footballers have been playing their home league matches there since Casement Park closed for renovation back in 2013.

However, that project has yet to begin, leaving Antrim without a suitable ground to host major Championship games.

Prolonged

The Saffrons were forced to give up home advantage for their recent Ulster quarter-final against Tyrone because Corrigan Park was deemed too small by their provincial council and the tie was instead played at Armagh's Athletic Grounds.

Planning applications for the redevelopment of Casement Park were submitted in February 2017. However, the prolonged nature of the planning process has impacted its cost, which is now estimated to be in the region of €125m.

Tickets for Corrigan Park went on sale yesterday priced at €20 despite the fact that there are no seats and no covered standing area.

Antrim's last Championship match at the venue was in 2016, when they were beaten by Limerick.

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