Munster championship hurling will return to Walsh Park next year according to county board chairman Sean Michael O’Regan.
Waterford played their two home fixtures against Limerick and Clare at Semple Stadium this season as the city venue was under reconstruction. With Phase 1 of the project completed, Walsh Park reopened to spectators on Sunday for the senior hurling semi final between De La Salle and Roanmore. Two new stands boast a total of 8,500 seats while the pitch has been widened by five metres.
O’Regan is confident that the ground will play host to the 2024 provincial fixtures against Tipperary and Cork. “A hundred per cent. That’s the plan. That was the reason, strategically, we went with the phases. We did Phase 1 first which was getting the North Stand and the South Stand done. The Keane’s Road End and the City End can be used as terraces as was always the case for Munster championships. The pitch was widened, we had to do that in Phase 1. Otherwise, we wouldn’t have been able to do it. We’re ready to go for the National League, we’re ready to go for our club football championships and looking forward to the Munster championship as well.”
He was delighted to see Walsh Park up and running again. “A fabulous day. Talking to the spectators coming in, they’re all very excited and very complimentary. It’s a long, long time coming from a Waterford GAA point of view. People have been talking about it for 20 odd years. To have Phase 1 finished and completed and have a match here today, it’s brilliant.”