Monday, March 17, 2008

St. Patrick's Day All-Ireland Club Championships - Croke Park

Today is St Patrick's Day and Kate and I went to Croke Park to see the All-Ireland Club Championships in hurling and football. We had perfect seats on the half way line with a great view of everything happening. We sat in the wrong seats (18 and 19) beside where we should have been - two others occupied the seats which we had tickets for (20 and 21). The weather was near-perfect - the low sun made looking down towards the Canal End a bit blinding at times.

The first match was the hurling final between Birr of Co Offaly and Portumna of Co Galway. We missed the first goal even though we were only 2 minutes late, but there were plenty of scores to keep us entertained. Birr led until about 25 minutes after which Portumna powered away for an easy win. Final score: Portumna 3-19, Birr 3-09. Star of the show was Portumna's teenage forward Joe Canning who scored 10 points.

Before the football final, we were moved out of our seats by new arrivals who had tickets for the seats we were sitting on - I checked with man occupying "our" seats, but he had tickets with the same seating numbers, but a different section. He wasn't for moving and I asked a steward to check the tickets after which Kate and I finally sat in "our" seats. Moral of the story here - always check your tickets - if you sit in someone else's seat, you will be moved.

The football final between St Vincents of Dublin and Nemo Rangers of Cork was a closer affair than the hurling - St Vincent's winning by 1-11 to 0-13. There were a lot of people supporting "Vinnys" in the crowd of over 31,000.

Despite the sun it was getting cold as we were leaving - Kate in particular felt the lower temperature. All in all, a good day's sporting entertainment and Kate certainly enjoyed her day out.

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