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Rugby In Ireland – Experience The Thrill And Passion
There is a saying that was in common usage in Victorian England which in its abbreviated form read; ‘Cricket is a gentlemen’s game played by gentlemen, Football is a gentlemen’s game played by thugs and Rugby Union is a thug’s game played by gentlemen.
Whether or not those who today play the game professionally could be called thugs is neither here nor there. However, there can be no argument that it is a game where hard men are matched against equally unyielding opponents. The supporters are not very much different – they are steadfast in their support of clubs and their country when it comes to their chosen game of the oval ball.
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There are few countries where the support of rugby is as fervent as it is in Ireland – and the famed Irish penchant for fun and a celebratory drink lends itself perfectly to the spectacle of an international rugby match – be it viewed at one of Ireland’s magnificent stadiums, home with friends in attendance or at the local watering hole.
For many who visit Ireland (or are residents) the ultimate rugby experience is to take a seat at the Aviva Stadium -which was formerly known as Lansdowne Road prior to its revamp and new corporate sponsorship. The stadium has a capacity of 51,700 when all are seated and attending a game at this venue is electrifying. To listen to the crowd roar out ‘Ireland’s Call’ is to understand the pride that they have in their national team.
When in Dublin rugby lovers who miss an international match played at the ornate RDS (Royal Dublin Society) Arena in the capital is to miss out on one of Ireland’s most iconic rugby venues. Booking your place in the stands well in advance is essential, the 18,500 seats are gone in a flash when the big men take to the field.
There are numerous other incredible rugby stadia in Ireland – listing those in detail risks offending supporters who call another home ground. Rest assured that no matter where you are in Ireland there will almost always be a rugby game in progress.
Of course, a local pub is perfect for watching a rugby match when the Irish are competing. There are some pubs around the country which have built an incredible reputation for providing rugby lovers with an experience that will not soon be forgotten.
Dublin’s Sinnott’s Pub in South King Street is a place where rugby supporters gather in their droves to enjoy the game and the traditional atmosphere. The Guinness is just the right temperature, the food (try the carvery) is first class and the supporters are passionate – what more could you ask for?
Another great choice is The Swan on 58 York Street. you know you’re going to be having the perfect supporters experience when the pub is owned by an ex-player. The locals are friendly and you’ll be welcomed with open arms.
The Living Room can be found on Cathal Brugha St. Its claim to fame is an array of some of the largest screens in Dublin. This is party central for rugby supporters – and the attached beer garden is incredibly popular.
Wherever you go in Ireland to enjoy the rugby experience you are sure to have the time of your life. The supporters are friendly and the atmosphere on game day is incredible. Make your plans to head to the Emerald Isle to take in the thugs game played by very large gentlemen.