The GAA have confirmed today that no third level championships will take place in 2021 with the Fitzgibbon and Sigerson Cups falling foul of the announcement.
It will come as a huge blow to all involved with the competitions becoming an increasing breeding ground for senior intercounty players.
It will be the first year since 1943 that the competitions will not be played.
UL and Mary I have each won twice in the Fitzgibbon cup since 2015 with no fewer than 11 of Limerick’s 2020 starting All-Ireland final XV winning medals in the competition.
Paddy O’Loughlin captained UCC to the title in 2020, their second consecutive title with Conor Boylan also part of the squad.
Limerick are yet to have a winner in the Sigerson Cup, but UL did reach successive final weekends in 2017 and 2018.
In a statement released by the GAA, they explain their decision and insist that a competition will be played in the next academic year for first years who will have missed out on the ‘fresher’ competitions.
“The GAA’s Higher Education committee have today confirmed that there will be no Third level Championships taking place in the remainder of this academic year. The committee had been hopeful of staging a comprehensive programme of games, including the Sigerson & Fitzgibbon Cups, but given the current landscape in the country and the public health difficulties, this will not be possible.
“We are particularly mindful of the current First Year students who have missed out Fresher competitions and the vital role that it plays in getting players involved in Third Level GAA. We are looking forward staging second year competitions for this year’s Freshers which we hope will take place in the first Semester of the 2021/2022 academic year.”