Waterford boss Derek McGrath content as Thurles chosen to host Munster final

Waterford manager Derek McGrath welcomed last night’s decision by the Munster Council ‘s Competition Control Committee (CCC) to stage the July 12 Munster SHC final in Semple Stadium.

The provincial CCC met in Limerick where they supported the proposal, endorsed by the Waterford County Board, for Thurles to host the game.

Board executive members from Waterford and Tipperary met on Monday where they came to an agreement on the decider taking place at Tipperary’s home grounds.

That decision came after McGrath had indicated his preference for the game to be played in Semple Stadium ahead of the neutral Gaelic Grounds where Tipperary beat Limerick in last Sunday’s Munster SHC semi-final.

Waterford officials would have been keen to ensure they have the opportunity to purchase as many tickets as the hosts.

McGrath’s team have already beaten Cork twice in Thurles this year and he has no concerns about conceding home advantage to Tipperary.

“We have no problem with it,” he said last night.

“The decision to go to Thurles was one we as management and players totally supported. We were under zero pressure from the county board to go there. It was our wish as a group to play there.

“There was an element of overkill from supporters about the negative connotations in going to Limerick but that didn’t affect our opinion. If we lose the game on July 12 it won’t be because of the venue but because Tipperary were the better team. We’ve a routine there from our last two games too.

“Thurles is a great venue for our supporters and it has to be considered that Waterford has been hit very badly by the recession, more so than any other county, and supporters had to be facilitated in a way. They like the layout in Thurles, it’s easier in terms of family tickets and travelling.”

The Munster minor hurling final between the winner of tomorrow’s Tipperary-Clare semi-final and Limerick-Cork game on July 2 will provide the curtain-raiser to the senior match on July 12.

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