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Tyrone And Football Were The Big Winners Today

Sunday 10.06.2012
Team Talk Mag
Club


Anyone who ever doubted the quality and intensity of The Ulster Championship should have been in Armagh today as the provincial first round produced two magnificent games of football. In front of a crowd a few short of sixteen and a half thousand all four teams produced some heroic football as they fought each other to a standstill in very warm and energy sapping conditions.
The quality of the general play and the scoring in both games was of the highest order. Both of today’s games clearly demonstrated the finest skills of Gaelic Football with great passing, strong running, high catching, superb score taking and excellent goalkeeping. A DVD of the best of these matches would make a useful addition to any team mentor’s coaching manual.
Rarely if ever have I seen such a large crowd gather in time for the minor match but those who were in on time were treated to a fantastic game of open, end to end football which swung very much in Armagh’s favour before Tyrone engineered a super comeback. The crowd too played their part fully today as did the venue which all added to the sense of occasion. The closeness of the spectators to the action added to the atmosphere particularly as the senior match entered the last ten minutes and the sides were separated at one stage by only a point. This was championship football at its competitive, enthralling best and the mediocrity of the opening three fixtures in the competition was forgotten about as both games kept the huge crowd entertained and on the edge of their seats for the entire duration of the matches.
Tyrone won both games this afternoon but the real winner was the Ulster Championship as today’s double header produced a real value for money spectacle worthy of being described as a clash of giants. This was exactly what the paying public wanted to see and what the media and press were hoping for. As has been the case over the past fifteen years when these two juggernauts have clashed they did not disappoint and few if any leaving The Athletic Grounds today will feel short changed. Let’s hope Donegal v Derry next week can build on today’s great game and lift the mood of those all around the world who take the time to watch it.

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