Ladies Football semis to attract attendance of up to 10,000 to Croke Park

Ladies Football semis to attract attendance of up to 10,000 to Croke Park

Ladies Football chiefs are expecting an attendance of between 5,000 and 10,000 for Sunday’s TG4 All-Ireland SFC semi-finals at Croke Park.

It is the first time that the stadium has hosted this stage of the Ladies Football championship.

Mayo face Galway in the opening game (2pm) with All-Ireland champions Dublin meeting Cork, the side they defeated in last year’s final, at 3.45pm.

Both games will be broadcast live by sponsors, TG4.

Though the figure may appear on stark on first viewing, officials insist it will represent a significant increase on previous All-Ireland semi-final attendances.

Last year’s semi-final doubleheader in Dr Hyde Park, Roscommon attracted a crowd of approximately 1,000.

There will be unreserved seating in the Lower Hogan Stand which will be only section of the stadium that will be open to supporters on the afternoon.

But there is quiet optimism amongst officials that the figure on the afternoon could reach the 10,000 mark which would represent another PR coup for the sport.

Earlier this year, Marie Hickey, President of the Ladies Gaelic Football Association, said the decision to play the semis at GAA headquarters represents “another huge step forward for our association and it will be great to watch the four semi-finalists battle it out at Croke Park for coveted places in the final.”

She continued: "Ladies Football continues to lead the way in Irish women's sport and after setting yet another attendance record for our TG4 All-Ireland Finals in 2018, we’re aiming to go even higher again in September."

Last year 50,141 spectators were in the stadium for the All-Ireland senior, intermediate and junior finals.The three deciders will again be played in Croke Park with these year’s games fixed for Sunday, September 15th

The LGFA and TG4 have urged those not attending the game to ‘Turn On TG4’ and watch the matches LIVE on TV, as they launched the #TurnUpTurnOn campaign.

“We’re asking pubs, clubs, restaurants, hotels, other local businesses and home-owners all over Ireland and abroad to Turn on TG4 and tune in to watch the cream of the crop battle it out for the two coveted Final slots on offer,” a Ladies Football spokesperson said.

TG4, Director General Alan Esslemont said: “We are delighted to support the #TurnUpTurnOn campaign. Growing both crowds and viewers for Ladies Gaelic Football puts a spotlight on Ireland’s most popular women’s sport but also blazes a trail where we hope that other Irish female athletes can follow. So please, Turn Up at Croke Park on Sunday or Turn On to TG4.”

Everybody who uses the #TurnUpTurnOn hashtag during the build-up to next Sunday’s games, and on matchday itself, will be entered into a draw to win tickets for the TG4 All-Ireland Senior Championship finals.

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