Cats extend hand of friendship to Rebels

February 20, 2008
Kilkenny have offered a foot-up to arch rivals Cork by proposing to go ahead with this weekend's NHL fixture. Though the CCCC ruled yesterday that the Rebels would forfeit the points from all four league games they failed to fulfil in both codes, the Noresiders are STILL prepared to face Gerald McCarthy's charges at a venue of their choice. In a surprise move, the Kilkenny County Board has made a very warm gesture by inviting Cork to play the game anyway on Sunday, with the Rebel County choosing the venue. The sides were supposed to meet at Nowlan Park in the opening round of the league but that match was postponed due to the player strike on Leeside. Kilkenny never had any objection to re-fixing the game but the CCCC ruling was dictated by a need to show consistency in dealing with the footballers and hurlers. Due largely to objections from Meath and Dublin, the football games could not be re-fixed, so the hurlers were treated equally. It's an extraordinary show of friendship and support from Brian Cody who is clearly putting intercounty rivalry aside to act in the greater interest of the game. Kilkenny would gain very little from facing an ill-prepared Cork outfit, while the match would bring the Rebels on immensely. The game will almost certainly go ahead, with or without the CCCC's blessing. It is likely that the teams will even play with no points at stake.

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