Cork and Cats to clash in aid of O’Connor drive

Kieran O’Connor

The senior hurlers of Cork and Kilkenny form part of an inviting double-header on Wednesday evening at Páirc Uí Rinn in aid of the Friends of Kieran O’Connor fundraising drive.

The two intercounty teams face off at the Cork venue at 7.30pm in one of the few opportunities they have for competitive fare ahead of their provincial championships, but that game will now be preceded by the Cork senior hurling championship clash of UCC and CIT, which throws in at 5.30pm. Tickets for the games are priced at €10 (adults) and €5 (U16’s). Tickets will be available on the night and will also be sold online and at participating Centra/SuperValu stores.

Chairperson Tracey Kennedy said: “Kieran was a tower of strength on the field for many years, and I know he is dealing with his illness with the same fortitude and determination.

“It can’t be an easy time for his family, but Kieran is lucky to have the love and support of Sinéad, the children and his extended family too.

“Our thoughts are with them all at this difficult time. Monday’s walk really highlighted the community aspect of the GAA, and it has been wonderful to witness the extent of the support shown for Kieran from far and wide over the past two weeks.”

The game comes on the heels of Armagh GAA donating all their gate receipts from the NFL game with Cork last Sunday, and the proceeds from the half-time draw, to the Friends of Kieran campaign.

Two of O’Connor’s 2010 All-Ireland winning teammates, Graham Canty and Alan Quirke, went to the Athletic Grounds to support the venture.

A bucket collection at the recent Kerry-Mayo NFL game also gathered a significant amount of money, while yesterday week the Walk For Kieran in Aghada drew hundreds of participants from all over Cork and beyond.

In addition, a bucket collection will be taken up outside Páirc uí Chaoimh ahead of the Cork v Tipperary Senior and Minor hurling games on May 12, O’Connor was recently diagnosed with a rare form of cancer and has been the focus of fundraising efforts which have already topped €300,000.

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