Hurling Championship boost as Etihad on board until 2017

The GAA has renewed its multi-million euro partnership with Etihad Airways who will continue to sponsor the All Ireland Senior Hurling Championship for the next five years.

Christy Cooney, former President of the GAA, said, “We are delighted to confirm Etihad Airways’ extension to their sponsorship of our GAA Hurling Championship and look forward to working in partnership with them for at least five more years.

James Hogan, Etihad Airways President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “I am delighted that we are strengthening our relationship with the GAA and extending a partnership that has worked so well for both organisations.

“Hurling is one of the world’s most remarkable sports and it epitomises the passion of the Irish people who have also been great supporters of Etihad Airways.

The four provinces were represented at the launch with Galway’s Joe Canning, Noel McGrath of Tipperary, Kilkenny captain Eoin Larkin and Antrim man Neill McManus all discussing their counties’ 2012 form ahead of this year’s Championship.

Antrim will be targeting the Leinster quarter-final clash with Westmeath as their make or break game McManus is raring to go.

“It’s a massive day for Antrim hurling, and we’ll be pulling out all the stops to get a victory that day.” says the Ruairí Óg forward.

“It certainly won’t be easy, we’ve had many battles with Westmeath down in Mullingar over the past 4 or 5 years.”

“It’ll be an exciting afternoon and it would be great if we could pull off a victory.”

Etihad will also become the naming rights sponsor of the new Skyline landmark tourist attraction at Croke Park, due to open in June 2012.

The 17-storey high Etihad Airways Skyline involves a roof top tour of the stadium and includes spectacular views of Dublin from five different viewing platforms atop three stands, as well as a suspended walkway.