Sport

Home comfort for Kilkenny in relegation final

SportBy Sean McGoldrick
Brian Cody's Kilkenny will have home advantage in relegation final
Brian Cody's Kilkenny will have home advantage in relegation final

All-Ireland champions Kilkenny will have home advantage at Nowlan Park for next Sunday's Division 1A relegation final against Clare.

Brian Cody's side won the toss to decide the venue. Even though the Cats suffered a heavy defeat to Dublin at Nowlan Park this season they have an excellent record at the venue.

They edged out Davy Fitzgerald's side in a curtain raiser on Sunday even though they knew they would be playing in the relegation final regardless of the result.

Players such as the Fennelly brothers, TJ Reid, Joey Holden - and possibly Henry Shefflin - will be available for selection again having helped their club Ballyhale Shamrocks win the All-Ireland title on St Patrick's Day.

Clare, already resigned to be without the suspended Brendan Bugler, are sweating over the fitness of both Colm Galvin and Conor McGrath, both of whom have damaged hamstrings.

Offaly's reward for reaching the quarter finals is a home draw in O'Connor Park, Tullamore against competition favourites Tipperary.

Even though Limerick lost the toss to stage their quarter final against Dublin they will be pleased that the game has been set for Croke Park rather than Parnell Park.

The match will form a double bill along with the Dublin v Derry Allianz Football League tie on Saturday evening.

Since winning beating Galway to win the Leinster title in 2013 Dublin have lost four games on the spin in Croke Park; two Walsh Cup finals, last year's Leinster final and a League tie against Cork this season.

Pairc Ui Rinn in Cork will host a double bill on Sunday; Cork meet Wexford in the hurling league quarter final while Cork host Mayo in the Football League.

Likewise, there will be a double bill on Saturday in Portlaoise,

Laois and Antrim clash in the Division 1B relegation play off while later Laois host Kildare in the football league.

The fourth hurling quarter final between Galway and Waterford has been confirmed for Walsh Park in Waterford.