Gaoth Dobhair, the holders, begin the defence of their Donegal Senior Championship with a home game in Magheragallon against St Eunan’s on Sunday, September 8.
The game, on the opening weekend of the championship, will have an evening throw-in and will be the last of the first round games in the race for the Dr Maguire Cup.
Gaoth Dobhair and St Eunan’s are in Group A along with Ardara and St Michaels. Sean MacCumhaills, Dungloe, Naomh Conaill and Killybegs are the teams in Group B, with Glenswilly, Four Masters, Milford and Glenfin making up Group C.
Newly crowned league champions Kilcar, Malin, Termon and Bundoran are the teams in Group B. Kilcar, the 2017 champions and one of the favourites, begin their bid for a league and championship double at home against Malin.
The championship throws in on Saturday, September 7 with three games down for decision and five more the following day Sunday.
The Sunday fixtures are at staggered times to give supporters an opportunity to take in more than one game.
“The Gaoth Dobhair versus St Eunans game would be an ideal game to launch the championship, but we felt it would be better to hold it to Sunday evening,” said Declan Martin, the Donegal assistant secretary and secretary to the Donegal CCC.
“We are working on the fixtures and they are currently being firmed up. I should have them finalised with the PRO by the weekend.
“Once the championship starts it will be full steam ahead with the games being played on consecutive weekends. In all between senior, intermediate and junior there will be 30 championship games played over the first three weekends.
“We are planning to stagger them as best we can so that supporters if they wish can take in a couple of games. This is also to give clubs a chance to increase their taking on the gate. Gates for the league have been very poor since the inter-county championship started.”
The senior championship will run every weekend for five weeks - group games, quarter-finals and semi-final with a week’s break before final on Sunday October 20.
There will be no break for the intermediate championship which will be run straight through over five weekends with the final on Sunday October 13.
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