REWARD THE TRUE BLUES
IN A rush to get from Croker to the victory banquet in the Burlington, I hailed a taxi on September 18th last. In truth, like most Dubs, I could have just as easily floated across the Liffey on the high from the finale to the football final. But I was soon brought back to earth with a bang.
My driver was in no rush to join the party mood. He couldn’t get a ticket for
the final and was never going near the GAA again.
I asked him had he been to many of the games earlier that summer.
He hadn’t been to any.
I decided to hold my tongue rather than risk losing my good mood.
Looking out at the sea of Rossie primrose and blue at the U21 final last Sunday in Tullamore the die-hard Dubs were even harder to spot. They were like little flecks of sky blue hidden away.
The Dubs have some of the best supporters in the country. As loyal as anything
that follows any team in any sport.
I’ve had the pleasure of travelling to games on the mini bus chartered by the Rialto Dubs Brigade of PC, Flossy, Marto, Deano, Tommo and Dolores. They don’t miss matches. Anywhere.
In times before then it was the Fr Joe Kennedy bus from Mount Argus with Sean
O’Connell and Kevin Whelan at the helm.
And you know it’s a hurling week when the phone beeps with a text from the Friends of Dublin Hurling with the details of their bus pick up times.There is a small but fiercely loyal group of fans who will follow the Dubs wherever they go. For the hurlers this group is even smaller again.I’m sorry my taxi driver didn’t have a ticket. Although I’d say the whole of Dublin heard the roar and felt the seismic shake when about 50,000 Dubs all leapt up in the air when Kev Mac’s shot nestled neatly in the Hill 16 net and then when Stephen Cluxton sent his free sweetly over the crossbar.
But it was hard to feel truly sorry for someone who was only looking to go when
it was the big day.
They say life is what happens when you are busy making plans. Lots of true blue fans will genuinely be unable to get to every chapter in the Championship story of 2012.
But it would be great if there was some way of making sure that those that do are not forgotten, for the people who really were there freezing on Kiltipper Road on New Year’s Day and have been on the road since - they should get a ticket first when times are scarce.It’s crazy, but the Rialto Brigade were still scrambling for tickets on the Saturday before the final, despite the fact they’ve clocked up thousands of miles wearing their colours through the good times and the bad.
It’s no longer a flight of fancy to believe that the Dublin senior hurlers are
going to be in an All-Ireland senior final. Hopefully, much sooner rather than
later. When that happens there’ll be a stampede to get onto the Dublin
Luckily, the hurlers already know their faithful: Dubs who invaded the pitch when they beat Wexford in a Leinster semi-final in Nowlan Park in 2009 or beat Cork in Pairc Ui Chaoimh in the league last year to make the final.
It would be great if there was a way of logging all of that to make sure that
when the big days arrive that the most deserving fans are at the top of the
queue for tickets.
We are a few weeks away from the emotional roller coaster that will be the 2012 Championships. The GAA’s new marketing campaign says ‘Nothing Beats Being There’
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