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Croke Park - Gaelic Football and Hurling

Listed under Spectator Sports in Dublin, Ireland.

  • Photo of Croke Park - Gaelic Football and Hurling
  • Photo of Croke Park - Gaelic Football and Hurling
  • Photo of Croke Park - Gaelic Football and Hurling
  • Photo of Croke Park - Gaelic Football and Hurling
Photo of Croke Park - Gaelic Football and Hurling
Photo by flickr user zoonabar
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Ireland's fierce protection of its heritage during its fight for independence from Britain has seen the two largest national sports, Gaelic Football and Hurling become solid foundations on which modern Ireland's culture is based around. All over the country regional leagues and cups are held to determine which counties will represent the provinces in the All-Ireland championships, held throughout summer.

On the first weekend of September the All-Ireland Hurling final takes place at the infamous Croke Park, while the All-Ireland Gaelic Football Final takes place on the last weekend of September. The atmosphere at Croke Park is always electric as fans travel from their counties in droves to witness their team play the final in Dublin.

Croke Park is a symbol of Irish patriotism, with the Hill 16 stand originally being built with rubble from the Easter Rising of 1916, and the Hogan Stand is a reminder of one of Ireland's darkest days when in 1920 the RIC paramilitary forces stormed a Dublin-Tipperary Gaelic football match, killing 13 spectators and Tipperary captain Michael Hogan, in reprisal for the killing of 14 British Intelligence officers earlier that day.

With such emotive history surrounding the two sports, it is unsurprising to find that a passionate atmosphere is found within the 82 000 seat stadium. The sports are fantastic spectacles alone, both fast and with a level of technicality that many other sports lack, especially Hurling, but mixed with such amazing surroundings and the bright colours of the counties in the stands, witnessing either match may leave the hairs standing on the back of your neck.

Written by  John Johnston.

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