Ulster Senior Hurling Championship

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Ulster GAA Hurling Senior Championship
Colours of Kilkenny.svg
IrishCraobh Iomána Uladh
Founded1901; 118 years ago (1901)
RegionUlster (GAA)
TrophyLiam Harvey Cup
No. of teams4
Title holdersColours of Antrim.svg Antrim (57th title)
Most titlesColours of Antrim.svg Antrim (57 titles)
TV partner(s)RTÉ, BBC Northern Ireland
MottoBe there. All the way.
Official websiteOfficial website

The Ulster GAA Hurling Senior Championship, known simply as the Ulster Championship, is an annual inter-county hurling competition organised by the Ulster Council of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). It is the highest inter-county hurling competition in the province of Ulster, and has been contested every year since the 1901 championship.

The final, usually held in July, serves as the culmination of a series of games played during June, and the results determine which team receives the Liam Harvey Cup. The championship has always been played on a straight knockout basis whereby once a team loses they are eliminated from the championship.

In 2016, a two-tier format began. Four teams compete in the Ulster Senior Hurling Championship, and four in the Ulster Senior Hurling Shield.

The title has been won at least once by five Ulster counties, all of which have won the title more than once. The all-time record-holders are Antrim who have won the competition 57 times. Antrim are also the current champions.[1]

Standing of the Ulster Championship[edit]

While the Munster Hurling Championship and the Leinster Hurling Championship are generally held in very high regard, and have produced the vast majority of recent All-Ireland Hurling Champions, the Ulster Championship has not been regarded historically as of a similar standard, and the Ulster champions have entered the All-Ireland Hurling Championship at an earlier round than the Munster and Leinster champions.

This is due to a number of factors, one of which is the dominance of Gaelic football in eight of the nine counties of Ulster. An Ulster team has never won the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, although Antrim were finalists in 1943 and 1989. Antrim have dominated the Ulster Championship throughout its existence, winning the title 57 times to date.

While below the standard of Leinster and Munster hurling, the Ulster championship has been generally of a higher standard than the now discontinued Connacht Senior Hurling Championship. However Galway, by far the strongest team in Connacht, have historically performed much better than any Ulster team, with several All-Ireland titles, and generally recognised as one of the major powers in the sport.

Top winners[edit]

County Wins Winning Years
Colours of Antrim.svg Antrim 57 1900, 1901, 1903, 1904, 1905, 1907, 1909, 1910, 1911, 1913, 1916, 1924, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1928, 1929, 1930, 1931, 1933, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1943, 1944, 1945, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1996, 1998, 1999, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018
Colours of Cork.svg Derry 4 1902, 1908, 2000, 2001
Colours of Down.svg Down 4 1942, 1992, 1995, 1997
Colours of Leitrim.svg Donegal 3 1906, 1923, 1932
Colours of Monaghan.svg Monaghan 2 1914, 1915

The following teams have featured in Ulster Senior Hurling Championship finals, but have yet to record a victory.

County Final Appearances Years
Colours of Laois.svg Cavan 5 1908, 1926, 1927, 1928, 1936
Colours of Armagh.svg Armagh 3 1946, 2011, 2017
Colours of Laois.svg New York 1 2006

Antrim's historic domination (only 3 finals have not featured the county; 1908, 1934 and 2001) has led over time to periods of uncompetitive competitions, and the championship was not played at all between 1950 and 1988. However, there have been periods when this domination has made way for periods of intense rivalry, notably between Antrim and Monaghan in the 1910s, between Antrim and Down in the 1990s, and between Antrim and Derry in the early 2000s.

The 2001 Championship was unique in terms of being the only final since the reactivation of the Championship in 1988 which did not feature Antrim, as Derry defeated Down at Casement Park. Equally of note, Antrim have won every final since (albeit one on replay), their longest period of continuous success since 1988.

Ulster Championship moments[edit]

  • Down 2-16 - 0-11 Antrim (12 July 1992 at Casement Park) – An historic day for Down who claimed a first provincial title since 1941. Victory would have been more decisive but for a tally of 13 wides in the first half. While Antrim lacked an attacking ace, Down's Gerard McGrattan was their candidate for man of the match. Goalkeeper Noel Keith also brought off some remarkable saves, most notably from a Ciaran Barr shot in the first half.
  • Derry 4-8 - 0-19 Antrim (9 July 2000 at Casement Park) – An historic day for Derry who secured the Ulster title for the first time in 92 years. Dual player Kieran McKeever got the opening goal for Derry, while Gary Biggs and Ollie Collins scored Derry's other two goals to give Derry an eight-point interval lead. A replay looked likely after John O'Dwyer's late goal levelled the scores minutes from time, however, it was Collins again scoring from a free to gain the winning point, and the title for Derry.
  • Derry 1-17 - 3-10 Down (15 July 2001 at Casement Park) – A first for Derry as they retain the Ulster title for the only time in their history. It was the first final not to feature Antrim since 1934. A point from John O'Dwyer won the match for Derry. Despite dominating the play in the second half, Down only managed to score three points.
  • Antrim 2-20 – 1-14 New York (22 October 2006 at Canton Field) – For the first and only time in the history of the championships, the Ulster final was played at Canton Field in Boston. This was to facilitate some of the New York teams who were unable to travel to Ireland due to their immigration status. A tally of 1-7 for Johnny McIntosh helped Antrim to a fifth successive championship.

Statistics and records[edit]

By decade[edit]

The most successful team of each decade, judged by number of Ulster Senior Hurling Championship titles, is as follows:

  • 1900s: 7 for Antrim (1900-01-03-04-05-07-09)
  • 1910s: 4 for Antrim (1910-11-13-16)
  • 1920s: 6 for Antrim (1934-25-26-27-28-29)
  • 1930s: 9 for Antrim (1930-31-33-34-35-36-37-38-39)
  • 1940s: 8 for Antrim (1940-43-44-45-46-47-48-49)
  • 1980s: 1 for Antrim (1989)
  • 1990s: 7 for Antrim (1990-91-93-94-96-98-99)
  • 2000s: 8 for Antrim (2002-03-04-05-06-07-08-09)
  • 2010s: 6 for Antrim (2010-11-12-13-14-15)

Biggest wins[edit]

The most one sided Ulster finals:

Successful defending[edit]

3 teams of the 4 who have won the Ulster championship have ever successfully defended the title. These are:

  • Antrim on 42 attempts out of 54 (1901, 1904, 1905, 1910, 1911, 1925, 1926, 1927, 1928, 1929, 1930, 1931, 1934, 1935, 1936, 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940, 1944, 1945, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1990, 1991, 1994, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015)
  • Derry on 1 attempts out of 4 (2001)
  • Monaghan on 1 attempts out of 2 (1915)


Longest gaps between successive Ulster titles:

  • 92 years: Derry (1908-2000)
  • 51 years: Down (1941-1992)
  • 40 years: Antrim (1949-1989)
  • 17 years: Donegal (1906-1923)

Longest undefeated run[edit]

The record for the longest unbeaten run stands at 24 games held by Antrim. It began with a 5-19 to 2-11 win against New York in the semi-final of the 2002 championship and will continue into the 2016 championship.

List of Ulster finals[edit]

All-Ireland runners-up
Year Winners Score Runners-up Score Venue Winning captain Winning team
1900 Antrim Unopposed
1901 Antrim 0-41 Derry 0-12
1902 Derry 2-7 Antrim 2-5
1903 Antrim 2-5 Donegal 0-5
1904 Antrim Unknown
1905 No record
1906 Donegal 5-21 Antrim 0-1
1907 Antrim 4-17 Derry 0-6
1908 Derry 2-8 Cavan 0-2
1909 Antrim Monaghan
1910 Antrim Donegal
1911 Antrim w/o Monaghan scr.
1912 Antrim Monaghan
1913 Antrim 3-3 Monaghan 0-0
1914 Monaghan 4-3 (2-0) Antrim 1-0 (2-0)
1915 Monaghan 1-5 Antrim 1-2
1916 Antrim 3-1 Monaghan 1-1
1917-1922: Championship suspended
1923 Donegal 7-1 Antrim 3-0
1924 Antrim 5-3 Donegal 4-0
1925 Antrim 5-4 Donegal 4-5
1926 Antrim 4-3 Cavan 3-1
1927 Antrim 5-4 Cavan 3-3
1928 Antrim 4-5 Cavan 1-1
1929 Antrim w/o Donegal scr.
1930 Antrim 10-4 Down 2-0
1931 Antrim 4-10 Derry 0-1
1932 Donegal 5-4 Antrim 4-5
1933 Antrim 1-7 Donegal 2-1
1934 Down 3-4 Donegal 2-2
1935 Antrim 7-9 Cavan 0-3
1936 Antrim 2-10 Cavan 3-2
1937 Antrim 6-7 Donegal 3-2
1938 Antrim 3-5 Donegal 2-2
1939 Antrim 9-8 Down 4-2 Páirc Esler
1940 Antrim 4-4 Down 1-3
1941 Down 5-3 Antrim 2-5 Athletic Grounds
1942 Championship abandoned
1943 Antrim 6-8 Monaghan 2-0 Corrigan Park Jimmy Walsh
1944 Antrim 7-3 (5-7) Monaghan 0-1 (6-4) Corrigan Park
1945 Antrim 8-2 Donegal 2-4 Corrigan Park M McAllister; M Butler, W Feeney, B Donnelly; T McAllister, T Tierney, J Mullan; S McKeon, N Campbell; M Kelly, S Kelly, L McGrady; D Cormican, C Mullan, S Mulholland.
1946 Antrim 6-3 Armagh 2-1 Corrigan Park M McAlinden; W Feeney, M McDonald, M Butler; J Woods, J Mullan, J Loughead; D Butler, N Campbell; M Mulholland, D McRandall, J Murray; D Cormican, G Brady, S Mulholland.
1947 Antrim Unopposed
1948 Antrim Unopposed
1949 Antrim Unopposed
1950-1988: Championship suspended
1989 Antrim 2-16 Down 0-9 Athletic Grounds Ciaran Barr N Patterson; G Rogan, T Donnelly, D Donnelly; J McNaughton, D McKinley, G O'Kane; P McKillen, T McNaughton; B Donnelly, A McCarry, J P McKillen; D Armstrong, C Barr, D McNaughton.
1990 Antrim 4-11 Down 2-11 Casement Park N Patterson; G Holden, D Donnelly, D McKinley; J Carson, D McKillop, A Murray; J Close, P McKillen; B Donnelly, A McCarry, S P McKillop; A McGuile, C Barr, O McFetridge. Subs: N Murray for A McGuile, G O'Kane for D McKillop, M Sullivan for McKillen.
1991 Antrim 3-14 Down 3-10 Casement Park N Patterson; P Jennings, D McKinley, D Donnelly; G Rogan, JMcNaughton, D McKillop; S P McKillop, P McKillen; J Carson, C Barr, D Armstrong; A McCarry, T McNaughton, J Close. Subs: Gregory O'Kane for Close, Garry O'Kane for S P McKillop, M Dennis for Greg O'Kane.
1992 Down 2-16 Antrim 0-11 Casement Park Noel Sands N Keith; K Coulter, D Woods, P Branniff; M Mallon, P McMullan, G Coulter; D Hughes, G Savage; P Coulter, G Blaney, G McGrattan; M Blaney, M Bailie, N Sands. Subs: C Mageean for M Blaney, P Savage for P Coulter.
1993 Antrim 0-24 Down 0-11 Casement Park P Gallagher; S McMullan, D McMullan, E McCloskey; R Donnelly, D McKinley, J McNaughton; P McKillen, P Jennings; A Elliott, Gary O'Kane, S P McKillop; J Close, T McNaughton, Greg O'Kane.
1994 Antrim 1-19 Down 1-13 Casement Park Dominic McKinley B Prenter; S McMullan, D McKinley, F McMullan; S P McKillen, P Jennings, J McCaffrey; P McKillen, J Connolly; J Carson, Gary O'Kane, P Walsh; C McCambridge, Gregory O'Kane, A Elliott. Subs: T McNaughton for G O'Kane, A McEteer for J McCaffrey, B McGary for G O'Kane.
1995 Down 1-19 (3-7) Antrim 2-10 (1-13) Casement Park N Keith; K Coulter, G Coulter, P Branniff; M Mallon, G Savage, D Woods; D Hughes, J McCarthy; P Coulter, P McMullan, M Blaney; C Arthurs, H Gilmore, N Sands. Subs: B Coulter for D Woods, M Branniff for P McMullan, S Mallon for H Gilmore.
1996 Antrim 1-20 Down 2-12 Casement Park B Prenter; E McCloskey, E Colgan, S McIlhatton; P Jennings, Gary O'Kane, R Donnelly; J Connolly, P McKillen; A McCloskey, T McNaughton, S P McKillop; P Graham, G O'Kane, A Elliott. Subs: S McMullan for R Donnelly, J Carson for McKillop, P Donnelly for McKillen.
1997 Down 3-14 Antrim 0-19 Casement Park Martin Mallon G Clarke; B Milligan, S Murray, B Smith; M Branniff, M Mallon, T Coulter; G Savage, P Coulter; B Coulter, M Bailie, G McGrattan; M Coulter, J McCrickard, N Sands. Subs: B Branniff for J McCrickard.
1998 Antrim 1-19 Derry 2-13 Casement Park Alistair Elliot S Elliott; R Donnelly, E Colgan, F McMullan; S McMullan, Gary O'Kane, C Kelly; P McKillen, J O'Neill; J Carson, C McGuckian, J McIntosh; A Elliot, Gregory O'Kane, L Richmond. Subs: K McKiernan for J O'Neill, J O'Neill for K McKiernan, J Elliott for J McIntosh. [2]
1999 Antrim 2-19 Derry 1-9 Casement Park Gary O'Kane S Elliot; C McCambridge, E McCluskey, R Donnelly; S McMullen, Gary O'Kane, S Mullen; C Cunning, J Close; A Elliot, C McGuckian, B McGarry; J Carson, Gregory O'Kane, L Richmond. Subs: S P McKillop for McGarry, F McMullin for Carson, J Flynn for A Elliott. [3]
2000 Derry 4-8 Antrim 0-19 Casement Park Conor Murray K Stevenson; C McGurk, C Murray, N Mullan; B Ward, C McEldowney, D Cassidy; O Collins, M Conway; K McCloy, K McKeever, R McCloskey; G Biggs, M Collins, J O'Dwyer. Subs: Gregory Biggs for Conway. [4]
2001 Derry 1-17 Down 3-10 Casement Park Colin McEldowney K Stevenson, C McEldowney, E McKeever, R Lynch, B Ward, M Conway, C Murray, R McCloskey, O Collins, Gary Biggs, K McKeever, Greg Briggs, M Collins, G McGonigle, J O'Dwyer. Subs: P Kelly for Lynch, S Downey for Gary Biggs, F McEldowney for M Collins. [5]
2002 Antrim 3-16 Down 1-18 Casement Park Colm McGuckian D Quinn; M Kettle, K Kelly, E McCloskey; K McKeegan, R Donnelly, C Herron; C Cunning, C Connolly; L Watson, C McGuckian, L Richmond; A Delargy, G O'Kane, C McCambridge. Subs: B McFall for Delargy; M McCambridge for McCloskey; S Delargy for McFall; P Richmond for Cunning; C Hamill for Donnelly. [6]
2003 Antrim 3-21 Derry 1-12 Casement Park Colm McGuckian D Quinn; M Kettle, K Kelly, J Campbell; M McCambridge, K McKeegan, C Herron; C Cunning, J Connolly; P Richmond, C McGuckian, L Richmond; L Watson, G O'Kane, B McFall. Subs: A Delargy for O'Kane, P Close for McFall. [7]
2004 Antrim 3-14 (1-15) Down 0-18 (1-15) Casement Park Colm McGuickian Damien Quinn, M Kettle, K Kelly, B Herron, M McCambridge, K McKeegan, J Campbell, C Herron, J Connolly, M Herron, C McGuckian, L Watson, Darren Quinn, P Richmond, B McFall. Subs: L Richmond for McCambridge, G J McIntosh for Watson, Ward for Darren Quinn, M Magill for Connolly. [8][9]
2005 Antrim 2-22 Down 1-18 Casement Park Jim Connolly D Quinn; M Kettle, G Bell, C Hamill; G Cunningham, J Campbell, M McCambridge; P Richmond, M Scullion; K McKeegan, K Kelly, M Herron, J McIntosh, J Connolly, J Scullion. Subs: K Stewart for Kelly, C Herron for M Herron, B McFall for J Scullion, C McGuckin for Cunningham. [10]
2006 Antrim 2-20 New York 1-14 Canton Park Karl McKeegan D Quinn; B McCauley, J McKeague, J Campbell; M Molloy, K McKeegan, C Herron ; C Cunning, M Scullion; J Scullion, C Kelly, M Herron; J McIntosh, P Richmond, B McFall. Subs: G Bell for McFall, B Delargey for Kelly, P McGill for McIntosh, M Dallas for M Scullion, S Óg McFadden for Richmond. [11]
2007 Antrim 2-24 Down 0-4 Casement Park Seán Delaqrgy R McGarry; M Kettle, M McCambridge, S Delargy; M Molloy, J Campbell, C Herron; B Herron, K McKeegan, P McGill, N McManus, M Herron, S McCrory, J McIntosh, P Shiels. Subs: N McAuley; Brian McFall for Shiels; P Richmond for McGill; S McDonald for McIntosh; Barry McFall for Kettle. [12]
2008 Antrim 3-19 Down 2-15 Casement Park Paddy Richmond R McGarry; A Graffin, N McGarry, S Delargy; C Herron, K McKeegan, J Campbell; K Stewart, E McCloskey; M Herron, C Donnelly, P McGill; P Richmond, L Watson, P Shields. Subs: PJ O’Connell for C Donnelly; S McCrory for P McGill; M Kettle for C Herron. [13]
2009 Antrim 3-20 Down 4-15 Casement Park Neil McGarry R McGarry; K McGourty, N McGarry, A Graffin; S Delargy, C Donnelly, N McAuley; J Campbell, K McKeegan; B Herron, N McManus, S McNaughton; K Stewart, P Richmond, J Scullion. Subs: E McCloskey for Stewart, M Herron for B Herron. [14]
2010 Antrim 4-22 Down 1-12 Casement Park Paul Shiels C O’Connell; K McGourty, C Donnelly, S Delargy; P Shiels, J Campbell, C Herron; S McNaughton, K Stewart; C McFall, T McCann, L Watson; PJ O’Connell, N McManus, K McKeegan. Subs: S McCrory for Stewart, J McKeague for Campbell, M Devlin for McNaughton, J McIntosh for Watson, B McFall for C McFall [15]
2011 Antrim 2-20 Derry 2-12 Casement Park Eddie McCloskey C Cunningham; C McGuinness, K McGourty, J McCouaig; K McKeague, M Donnelly, C Herron; B McFall, S McCrory; J Scullion, T McCann, E McCloskey; P Doherty, C McFall, K McKeegan. Subs: K Molloy for K McKeague, C Carson for J Black, P Shiels for B McFall, D Hamill for T McCann. [16]
2012 Antrim 3-18 Derry 0-9 Casement Park Damien Quinn D Quinn; James Campbell, N McGarry, A Graffin; M Herron, N McAuley, Johnny Campbell, B McAuley, S McNaughton; E McCloskey, C Carson, P Shiels; L Watson, N McManus, B McFall. Subs: C McCann for Sheils, J Scullion for Watson, C Rea for B McAuley, D Hamill for McFall, C McFall for Carson. [17]
2013 Antrim 4-20 Down 1-17 Celtic Park Neil McManus S McToal; B McFall, C McKinley, M Bradley; S McCrory, N McAuley, Ciaran Johnston; E Campbell, J McGreevy; N McKenna, C Carson, P Shiels; D McKernan, N McManus, C Clarke. Subs: S McAfee for McGreevy, Conor Johnston for McKernan, D Hamill for Clarke, N Elliott for McKenna. [18]
2014 Antrim 2-17 Derry 2-16 Owenbeg Centre of Excellence Paul Shiels S McToal; O McFadden, M Donnelly, A Graffin; M Bradley, C Carson, N McAuley; J McGreevy, D Hamill; C McCann, P Shiels, E Campbell; C McGuinness, PJ O'Connell, D McKernan. Subs: R McCambridge for McGreevy, Niall McKenna for McGuinness, Daniel McCloskey for Hamill. [19]
2015 Antrim 1-15 Down 1-14 Owenbeg Centre of Excellence Chris O'Connell C O’Connell; O McFadden, M Donnelly, R McCambridge; J Dillon, C McKinley, T McCann; N McAuley, M Dudley; PJ O’Connell, C McCann, E Campbell; D McClean, C Carson, D McKernan. Subs: P Burke for Campbell; C Ross for Donnelly; N McKenna for McAuley; J Connolly for McKernan; D Traynor for McClean.
2016 Antrim 6-21 Armagh 4-14 Owenbeg Centre of Excellence Conor Carson C O'Connell; S McCrory, N McAuley, B Graham; F Donnelly, P Burke, J McKeague; E Campbell, D McKernan; E McCloskey, J Dillon, J Connolly; B McCarry, C Carson, C Clarke. Subs: O McFadden for McCrory, S Delargy for Graham, S McCrory for Donnelly, C McNaughton for McKernan. [20]
2017 Antrim 5-22 Armagh 1-12 Owenbeg Centre Of Excellence
2018 The Ulster Hurling Championship was cancelled for three years.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Duffy, Cóilín (12 July 2015). "Antrim strike late to claim another Ulster title". RTÉ Sport. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  2. ^ "Antrim halt Derry odyssey". Irish Independent. 6 July 1998. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  3. ^ "Lucky 13 as Antrim take title". The Free Library. 11 July 1999. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Epic Derry comeback puts double on agenda". Irish Independent. 10 July 2000. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  5. ^ "O'Dwyer tips the balance for Derry". Irish Times. 16 July 2001. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  6. ^ "Antrim win Ulster hurling title". Breaking News. 9 June 2002. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  7. ^ "Antrim's crown never in danger". Irish Times. 16 June 2003. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  8. ^ "Antrim officials claim side 'robbed' of win by referee". Irish Times. 7 June 2004. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  9. ^ "One bitten, twice shy". Irish Times. 14 June 2004. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  10. ^ "Antrim are Ulster hurling champs". RTÉ Sport. 5 June 2005. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  11. ^ "Antrim claim their Ulster crown in Boston". Irish Independent. 23 October 2006. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  12. ^ "Dismal Down make it easy for Antrim". Irish Times. 4 June 2007. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  13. ^ "Ulster SHC: Saffrons on top again". Hogan Stand. 15 June 2008. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  14. ^ "Antrim's late surge ends brave Down's bid". Irish Times. 29 June 2009. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  15. ^ "Antrim's ninth on the spin". Irish Times. 28 June 2010. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  16. ^ "Antrim forced to dig deep". Irish Examiner. 4 July 2011. Retrieved 17 June 2013.
  17. ^ "Stroll in the park for Antrim". Irish Times. 9 July 2012. Retrieved 4 January 2016.
  18. ^ "Ulster SHC final: 139 see Antrim retain crown". Hogan Stand. 2 February 2014. Retrieved 4 February 2014.
  19. ^ "McKernan's late strike ensures Antrim retain stranglehold on Ulster". Irish independent. 14 July 2014. Retrieved 14 July 2014.
  20. ^ "Antrim claim goalfest to retain Ulster hurling title". Irish Examiner. 10 July 2016. Retrieved 31 July 2016.