Catriona Kelly of SuperValu Kilmallock pictured with Jimmy Cronin, Millmount, Kilmallock who was thrilled to get his hands on a pair of Hogan Stand tickets Picture: Michael Cowhey
AN ‘unprecedented’ demand for tickets to witness the Limerick hurlers’ semi-final clash with Cork has seen 25,000 tickets snapped up already for the July 29 showdown.
And a special train has been arranged by Iarnrod Eireann to accommodate the large volume of supporters travelling to Croker.
“The initial surge in sales on Monday and Tuesday was unprecedented,” said Mike O’Riordan, secretary of Limerick County Board.
It is expected that between and 25,000 and 30,000 people from the county and city will make the journey from Limerick for the match.
“There is great excitement building already. The club allocations have come into the county board and they will be distributed this Thursday to the various clubs and outlets. I would advise anyone who hasn’t got their tickets to either purchase through the various outlets or through their clubs,” Mr O’Riordan added.
Such has been the public appetite for tickets, a number of regular trains are already sold out prompting Iarnrod Eireann to finalise plans this Wednesday for a special train to depart from Colbert station at 9.10am on Sunday, July 29.
Jeremiah Coughlan from Castletroy was one of the many concerned Limerick supporters who called on Irish Rail to put on the special train
“I worry for a lot of supporters. I was on the website yesterday and I couldn’t believe it - all gone!” he said.
“I know years ago there used to be trouble on the trains but that day is gone,” stated the first cousin of former Limerick hurling manager Tom Ryan
“I live in Castletroy but my heart is in Ballybrown. There is something special about this team,” he added.
Tickets for online booking of the special train service are to be available on the journey planner www.irishrail.ie around lunchtime this Thursday. Departing from Limerick at 09.10hrs the train is due into Heuston at 11.10hrs, returning from Heuston at 18.50hrs due back into Limerick around 21.00hrs.
Supporters will not be allowed to bring alcohol on board special or regular services for these matches.
“We have a yield management system in place for our online booking. The more that book the more expensive it becomes,” explained Jim Gallivan, Business Development Manager, Limerick, Iarnrod Eireann (Irish Rail), Colbert Station Limerick of the special service.
It is expected that most of the adult fares will be in the region of €20 to €26 each way increasing to €30.99 as the trains sell out. Child fares start at €11.49 each way.
The July 29 semi-final will have a 3.30 start and will be televised live on both RTE and Sky Sports.
Tickets are on sale in Centra or SuperValu shops or online at gaa.tickets.ie
Seated tickets for the Hogan, Cusack and Davin stands are €45 for adults. There are juvenile tickets of €5 available for the Cusack and Davin stands only.
Hill 16 terrace tickets are €30. Group tickets are available through the clubs. There is also a student and senior citizens concession (Cusack & Davin stands only) with patrons to purchase full price tickets and get rebate of €10 with valid ID on matchday.
The Limerick minor hurlers bid to join the seniors in an All Ireland semi final when they play Kilkenny this Saturday (3.00) in Thurles - in their quarter final. Victory books a Croke Park date with Dublin.