Leading players from the colleges competing in the concluding stages of the 2022 Yoplait HEC third-level Championships gathered yesterday at Dublin City University’s St Patrick’s Campus, ahead of a bumper festival of third-level football.

There will be live-streamed coverage of all seven finals – with three scheduled for Tuesday, March 8, to coincide with International Women’s Day, one final next Friday, March 11th and three including the Yoplait O’Connor Cup Final, the female equivalent of the Electic Ireland Sigerson Cup on Saturday.

After a two-year absence, the Finals are set to return and third-level Championship silverware will be handed out for the first time since 2019, with Dublin City University as hosts for the 2022 semi-finals and Finals.

DCU have made it through to Friday’s semi-finals and the quality of the team is evidenced by the fact that Emma Duggan from Meath, Jennifer Dunne, Abbie Shiels, Carla Rowe, Niamh Hetherton and Rachel Hartnett from Dublin could all be in action in tomorrow’s Lidl National League repeat of last year’s TG4 All Ireland Final at Pairc Tailteann.

The 2020 and 2021 competitions were cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic but the Championships have returned with a bang – and with a new sponsor in Yoplait Ireland.

The Yoplait O’Connor Cup Final will be shown live on the Spórt TG4 YouTube page, while the other six Finals will be live on the LGFA’s Facebook Page and on the LGFA’s Official YouTube channel.

This year marks the 33rd anniversary of the Higher Education Committee third-level championships and speaking on behalf of new sponsors, Yoplait Ireland, Brand Manager Deirdre Lowry, said: “We would like to wish all of the teams participating in the upcoming games the very best of luck. We recognise the dedication and commitment that’s required from players as they combine these important games and training with full-time studies.”

“At Yoplait, we are convinced that success is achievable when we always believe and give the very best of ourselves.”

“These competitions are the very embodiment of this belief and we are proud to be associated with the great work taking place in colleges across the country.”

“We look forward to growing our relationship with the LGFA and its players in the coming years.”

“We are delighted to host this festival of Yoplait third-level football,” added Paul O’Brien, Dublin City University Head of Gaelic Games,

“We are relieved and delighted to get back to third-level activity in this academic year, with the continued rise of Ladies Football seeing DCU Dóchas Éireann field teams in each of the seven Championships.”

58 teams have taken part across the seven competitions with 2,400 players representing 32 different third level colleges and institutions.