When asked to do this assignment on a place of interest in the county of Limerick one place came to mind, Thomond Park. Thomond Park is one of Ireland's finest examples of sports arenas. It is most famous for being the home grounds of Munster Rugby. It has a maximum capacity of 25,600 and has many highly praised facilities(e.g banqueting facilities). Aswell as rugby, Thomond Park has been used as a concert venue by some of the worlds biggest artists in the world. This list includes Elton John, Bob Dylan, Rod Stewart and Pink. Located in the city of Limerick, Thomond Park has its own museum which showcases the history and heritage of Munster Rugby, the original and the new refurbished Thomond Park.
The new and improved Thomond Park reopened its door in 2008 with a rugby match which was watched by over 1 million viewers world wide. The local Munster Rugby team, at the time considered one of the best rugby club in the world, against the best international team in the world, the All Blacks of New Zealand. The world renowned Haka was on that night not only performed by the All Blacks but by four of the Munster team. Known as the four Kiwis, Lifeimi Mafi, Doug Howlett, Rua Tipoki and Jeremy Manning stood side by side and in front of the rest of Munster team and paid respects to their ancestors and be part of the pre-match ritual. It was a truly magical moment and the cheers from the crowd were unbelievable.
It had been 30 years since the last time the All Blacks had been in Limerick in the original Thomond Park. They were beaten by Munster 12-0 in 1978 and the captain of that Munster team, Donal Canniffe was delivered the match ball by helicopter. After a hard hitting and passionate battle to say the least, it was the mighty All Blacks that achieved a win by 2 points as a result of Joe Rokocokos getting a late try, leaving the score at 18-16.
S. Carroll ( 11108029 )