FROM THE AR­CHIVE

Irish Examiner - - Forum -

It was glory all the way for Cork in Croke Park yes­ter­day, where they made camo­gie his­tory by be­com­ing the first county to take both All-Ire­land ti­tles in the same year. The se­niors also be­came the first Cork team to win four ti­tles in a row, while the ju­niors won Cork’s first-ever ju­nior ti­tle. Cork star Cally Rior­dan also had the dis­tinc­tion of win­ning two medals. She was the ju­niors’ big star, scor­ing two of her side’s goals, and she came on in the last five min­utes of the se­nior game and played a vi­tal role in their win.

The se­nior game, in which Cork scored a very nar­row one-point win, was a very wor­thy show­piece of the camo­gie year. It had ev­ery­thing one would ex­pect of an All-Ire­land fi­nal — top class camo­gie, goal­mouth thrills, and a score­line in which a goal was the largest mar­gin to sep­a­rate the sides at any stage. fa­nat­i­cal Lim­er­ick sup­port­ers yes­ter­day car­ried their he­roes proudly across the wet-green sward of Croke Park af­ter they had mas­tered Kilkenny in one of the most mag­nif­i­cent hurl­ing fi­nals of re­cent years.

The long blast of ref­eree Michael Slav­ery’s whis­tle, which ter­mi­nated the 33-year-old wait in the All-Ire­land wilder­ness for the men from Shan­non­side, sig­nalled the in­va­sion onto the pitch of thou­sands of Lim­er­ick fans in the of­fi­cial at­ten­dance of 58,009.

This was Lim­er­ick’s mo­ment of un­ri­valled glory and how they savoured it. In their ef­forts to shower con­grat­u­la­tory pats on the backs to the men who had re­alised their burn­ing am­bi­tion, they tore down some barbed wire sur­round­ing the pitch.

These le­gions of fans gave vent to their feelings in a wave of emo­tion. Many shed tears of joy unashamedly.

It was in­deed an un­for­get­table mo­ment when team cap­tain Ea­monn Cre­gan was even­tu­ally al­lowed through The Sam Maguire Cup, sil­ver sym­bol of foot­ball supremacy, was home­ward bound for Cork. Its new rest­ing place, af­ter a lapse of 28 years, was de­cided at Croke Park yes­ter­day when the white and red he­roes of Cork de­feated Gal­way by 3-17 to 2-13 to win the All- Ire­land se­nior foot­ball cham­pi­onship for the fourth time in their his­tory.

The dream that had turned into a night­mare so of­ten in the past had be­come a re­al­ity at last. The heart­breaks so of­ten en­coun­tered since Cork’s last vic­tory in 1945 had fi­nally been washed away in the fi­nal wave of vic­tory. Cork were the cham­pi­ons of Gaelic foot­ball once again, their hunger for suc­cess had been ap­peased, their strong­hold on the Sam Maguire tro­phy had be­come firm. 73,308 spec­ta­tors, the big­gest crowd to at­tend an All-Ire­land fi­nal since the ca­pac­ity of the ground was re­duced af­ter the fi­nal of 65, thronged into Croke Park for this glam­our fi­nal.

Pic­ture: Ir­ish Ex­am­iner Ar­chive/Ref 165/25

The home­com­ing re­cep­tion for the Cork Ju­nior and Se­nior All-Ire­land-win­ning camo­gie teams out­side the Vic­to­ria Ho­tel, Pa­trick St, on Septem­ber 17, 1973.

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