Olivia’s dream day
Crossbridge student lines out for the Dubs in Croker
IN March, I qualified to go to Ballinakill for a Cumann na mBunscol GAA skills competition. I was very happy when I came first in the ladies football.
After a while of waiting to see what would happen, I received a letter from Cumann na mBunscol. When I opened the letter, I couldn’t believe that I would be playing in Croke Park on the day of the All–Ireland football final. I could not believe it!
During the summer I practised my skills and finally the day arrived. I got up early, got dressed and ate my breakfast. Eventually we got into the car for our journey. When we arrived we went to a community centre where we waited to be told what to do.
There were a lot of other children there from lots of other counties. After saying goodbye to our parents, we got into our teams with our great coaches and set off to Croke Park. It was a quick walk and we arrived at the stadium soon after. It was so exciting to see my kit hanging up in the dressing room. I was wearing Dublin No. 9.
Then we left to get pictures taken. When we got back to the dressing rooms we put on our boots and got our gumshields and gloves ready. We got to our seats and watched the start of the minor match. Near the end of the first half we left to get ready to go onto the pitch.
When we reached the side of the pitch I realised that I was about to play in Croke Park! I was so nervous at this stage. As the half-time whistle rang through the stadium we ran onto the pitch. The grass looked so amazing I just couldn’t wait to start playing.
As soon as the match started all my nerves were gone. I was playing with girls from all over the country. The match was ten minutes long. When the match finished, we went for lunch. After that we got changed into the club jerseys of the Dublin footballers.
I got a Clontarf jersey, the team that Jack McCaffrey plays for. We stood by the red carpet where all the players got to shake hands with the GAA President.
After that we left and went to our seats and watched the senior All-Ireland match. I was disappointed that it was a draw, but it was the best game of football I have ever seen so far. That day in Croke Park was the best day
Olivia Shannon (9) qith the Dublin team along with INTO President Fergal Broughan, Cumann na mBunscol Chairperson Mairead O’Callaghan, President of the LGFA Marie Hickey, Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael John Horan.
Olivia Shannon in action against Kerry.