The Irish Examiner has entered a three-year partnership with Cork GAA to provide exclusive live streaming of football and hurling club championship games across all grades up to 2022.
The deal, unveiled at Páirc Uí Chaoimh today, guarantees live match coverage every championship weekend for GAA fans in Cork, around the country, and all over the world for the next three seasons.
A subscription fee will not apply this season, with all games being live-streamed free of charge.
The 2020 Cork county championship program throws-in this weekend, with the Irish Examiner providing live coverage of the Premier SFC clash between Ballincollig and St Finbarr's at Páirc Uí Rinn on Friday evening.
“The Irish Examiner continues to provide unrivalled sports coverage and with this partnership, we add regular live streaming to our GAA match reports, analysis, and star columnists and writers,” said Irish Examiner editor Tom Fitzpatrick.
Speaking at the launch of the streaming partnership, Cork GAA chairperson Tracey Kennedy said: “This partnership is a great opportunity for our patrons to see games they might not be able to attend from the comfort of their own homes, and is particularly timely this year given the current limitations on spectator numbers.
“We have been exploring the option of streaming for some time now, and with the quality of the service provided a key priority, the Irish Examiner are the perfect partners for us. Their coverage of our games is already second-to-none, and this arrangement takes an already strong relationship to another level.
“My thanks to all involved in making this happen, and I look forward to tuning in myself given that, like so many other fans, I won't be able to get to games for a while either!”
Irish Examiner sports editor Tony Leen said that in a challenged business environment, the deal with Cork GAA is an important statement in terms of priorities to the Irish Examiner's loyal audience and its cross-platform approach to sports coverage: “We hope to build on the pilot agreements last season which brought live GAA coverage into homes all over the world.”
The live streaming partnership with Cork GAA follows last season’s 2019 broadcast initiative on the Irish Examiner’s digital platforms when the Irish Examiner streamed live over a dozen club championship matches before bringing the inter-county Co-Op Superstore Munster SHL to GAA fans last winter. Viewing figures for those games included a staggering 13,000% jump in ‘watched content minutes’ and a 524% jump in followers from the previous year.
The Irish Examiner match team will provide live coverage, via irishexaminer.com, of at least two to three matches over each club championship weekend during the 2020 season. The Irish Examiner will again have exclusive coverage in 2021 and 2022.
The Irish Examiner matchday team will include commentators Colm O’Connor and Des Curran, with analysis from the likes of Ger Cunningham, Mark Landers, Brian Cuthbert, and Patrick Kelly.
Kevin O’Donovan, CEO/Secretary of Cork GAA, said: “We are delighted to launch this special partnership with the Irish Examiner, never has the appetite for our games been so great.
“As we embark on a bumper club championship our patrons will have the ability to watch games, thanks to the Irish Examiner, from the comfort of their homes.
The quality of coverage from the Irish Examiner will continue to ensure our supports can analyse and enjoy the championship throughout the season”.
Irish Examiner operations manager Michael Sheehan said: “We are very pleased to announce a new development for our readers with Cork GAA. This innovation will bring our coverage of Cork GAA to our readers in a new format and at a time that best suits their needs.
“It is a partnership that we feel will be mutually beneficial for both parties and we look forward to working on these opportunities with Cork GAA and enhancing what we believe is already the best sports coverage in the country.”