As part of its First Class Rivals campaign, Electric Ireland is to live stream eight key fixtures from the Sigerson and Fitzgibbon cup tournaments taking place over the coming weeks.
The tournaments are the main showcase for third level colleges and universities and will feature some of the leading players at inter-county level.
The matches will be shown live on Electric Ireland’s YouTube channel as well as on the GAA’s own streaming platform GAA Now.
“In our second year of sponsoring the Electric Ireland Sigerson, Fitzgibbon and Higher Education Championships, we are delighted to bring fans closer to the action for the first time ever through the live streaming of a selection of key games,” said Electric Ireland Sponsorship Manager Edel McCarthy.
“We look forward to seeing these first class county rivals unite on the pitch with the goal of coming away as Fitzgibbon or Sigerson Cup Champions.”
“Providing easy access to GAA fans to watch key games in the Electric Ireland Sigerson, Fitzgibbon and Higher Education Championships via a live stream is a big step forward in the promotion of these Championships and a step that the GAA welcomes,” added GAA President John Horan.
“These competitions, steeped in history and tradition, showcase the best the GAA has to offer and I’d encourage any GAA fan to tune in to see what is always a highly competitive, exciting display of our national games.”
Sponsors have driven something of a revolution in the breadth and diversity of the games that fans can tune into using streaming technology.
AIB and Liberty Insurance have both enabled the streaming of key games at club and county level before and the extension towards the higher education arena is to be warmly welcomed.
It will showcase to a wider audience the talent on display including from the likes of All Ireland Champion Seamus Flanagan who will be playing wityh the UCD Hurling team before rejoining the Limerick panel.
“I think Electric Ireland’s First Class Rivals sums up what the Fitzgibbon Cup stands for,” he said at the launch yesterday.
“The competition is a highlight for me each year and a big part of that is playing alongside lads that you might not ordinarily have the chance to play with.”
“To play as teammates with some of your biggest rivals from inter-county level gives you a different perspective and challenge and results in what is always a highly competitive championship.”
Ulster University footballer and 2018 All-Ireland finalist with Tyrone, Michael McKernan was also at the launch.
“Support is a huge part of the GAA and I think Electric Ireland’s live streaming of the games is a significant addition in 2019,” he added.
“It will really help to grow support surrounding the competitions which mean the world to us and I think it’s brilliant for people and particularly students who may not be in a position to travel to the venues on the day of games to be able to watch the games easily online.”
“It will really give us as players a big boost to know the support is behind us.”
Electric Ireland is committed to investing in young talent, launching the four-year sponsorship of the Higher Education Championships in 2018, adding to its sponsorship of the GAA Minor Championships.
Electric Ireland’s Sigerson, Fitzgibbon and Higher Education Championship campaign, #FirstClassRivals, showcases the unique trait of these historic GAA competitions that sees team composition, unlike in club and county Championships, determined by place of learning not place of birth allowing traditional rivals to form the most unexpected of alliances.
Over 7,000 students take part in the Electric Ireland GAA Higher Education Leagues and Championships that commence in November and culminate in the Electric Ireland Sigerson and Fitzgibbon Cup Finals which take place on the 20 February in Mallow and on the 23 February in WIT respectively.