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'I'm disappointed with the criticism' - Cork GAA chief defends price hike for county senior final

There was plenty criticism of admission prices for yesterday’s Cork hurling finals.
Oct 15th 2018, 6:18 PM 18,170 25

THE DECISION TO raise prices for tickets to this year’s Cork senior club finals has been defended amidst criticism from supporters and the county board have revealed they will consider following the example of Clare and Tipperary by introducing a weekend pass to entice fans in 2019 to games.

A general view of Pairc Ui Chaoimh Páirc Uí Chaoimh hosted yesterday's hurling final. Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

Yesterday’s Cork senior hurling final drew a crowd of 10,214 to Páirc Uí Chaoimh as Imokilly retained their title with a win over Midleton but there was plenty criticism of the decision to raise admission prices by a fiver with entry for an adult costing €25 while it was €20 for OAP or student.

In contrast yesterday’s Roscommon county senior football final had tickets priced at €15 while next Sunday’s county senior hurling deciders in Dublin and Tipperary are priced at €20 for adults along with €15 for OAPs and students.

A Croke Park spokesperson confirmed to The42 that no directive was issued to counties in relation to a standard price for county final tickets but they were advised ‘to ensure they pitch it appropriately to their respective captive audiences’.

Cork GAA chairperson Tracey Kennedy has defended their decision and stated comparisons with last year’s hurling decider that attracted a crowd of over 16,000 were not valid.

“I’m disappointed with the criticism. People are entitled to their opinions, they feel the price is a bit too high. I suppose from our point of view we haven’t increased the prices for 12 years. 

“We ran a pre-sale offer which is €22, people could have bought their tickets during the week which is €2 more than it would have been for the last number of years. On the positive side we have tried very hard to keep our U16s free and we are still doing that. That’s important for us to encourage as many children as possible to come to our games and we really want to hang on to that if we can at all. 

“The senior finals are our flagship competitions and we feel that they are good value at the €22 particularly for the people that bought them at pre-sale but also at €25, we feel that’s good value.

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Seamus Harnedy lifts the trophy presented by Tracey Kennedy Seamus Harnedy captained Imokilly to victory yesterday against Midleton. Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

“It’s not a valid comparison to compare it to last year because it was an aberration. That was an unusual year in that we’d the opening of the stadium and we also had two senior finals on the one day.

“If you look back over the years, crowds have been dwindling for a number of years now and particularly when you factor in that we had a divisional team involved, it tends to affect the crowd in a normal situation anyway. I don’t think there’s any dramatic decrease in the crowd.”

There has been widespread praise for the weekend pass initiatives in Tipperary and Clare recently for club activity, something which Cork will consider. Entry prices for the senior football final on 28 October, where St Finbarr’s will face Castlehaven or Duhallow, will be the same as the hurling decider.

“That’s something before this we had already talked about that and it’s something we’re going to consider for next year, we’re going to take a look at that,” stated Kennedy.

“There’s a lot of factors to be taken into consideration but it is something we’ve already discussed.

“Absolutely we would value our senior football final as the same level as our senior hurling final. Our pricing would be the same.”

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Fintan O'Toole


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