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Munster Council admit 'inadequate stewarding' was a cause of pitch invasion before minor final

Last night’s game between Limerick and Waterford was disrupted by supporters crossing the pitch beforehand.

Pic: INPHO/Lorraine O’Sullivan

THE MUNSTER COUNCIL have accepted ‘inadequate stewarding’ contributed to the chaotic crowd scenes before last night’s provincial minor hurling final replay in Thurles.

Limerick claimed the silverware with a 1-20 to 4-8 victory over Waterford but the game was marred by the scenes before the throw-in which saw supporters walk across the pitch from the New Stand at Semple Stadium to the Kinane Stand.

In an official statement released today, the Munster Council insist that the 10,000 capacity New Stand was capable of accommodating the crowd on the night as the attendance, per the stadium stilecounter system, was 6,532.

But the provincial body have apologised to the competing teams for having their pre-match preparations compromised by the invading fans and the subsequent delay to the throw-in.

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The statement in full reads:

Munster GAA Statement related to Munster Minor Hurling Final Replay

The Munster Council expected and planned for an attendance of between 5,000 to 6,000 at last night’s Munster Minor Hurling Final replay.

The attendance on the night was 6,532, as confirmed by the Stadium stile counter system. The Council is satisfied that this is accurate of the numbers in attendance.

As with all fixtures of this nature, the only side of the ground that was opened was the new stand. This stand has a capacity of 10,000, which was more than adequate to cater for the numbers that attended.

As a large number of people came to the ground with 15 minutes to go to throw in, we took the decision to postpone the throw in for 10 minutes in order to allow everyone safe entry to the ground.

We are satisfied that this was the correct decision and are satisfied that queues had dissipated at 7.35 pm. This was actively monitored by Council officials.

Regarding the fans who walked across the pitch from the New Stand to the Kinane Stand, we regret any inconvenience caused to the participating teams in their preparations for the game and we will be reviewing the matter with Semple Stadium.

We regret that a minority of fans took the decision to leave the New Stand, which had ample room to accommodate all patrons.

The council acknowledges that there was inadequate stewarding to the front of the stand to cope adequately with this patron behaviour and it is a matter that we will review.

YouTube: Tomás Ó Cadhla

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Fintan O'Toole

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