Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 December 2014

Simple solution to rugby's dilemma on anthems

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I doubt very much that 'Rugby Fan' from Bangor (Write Back, September 7) is a fan of rugby at all.

A very few people on the Ulster Rugby message board repeated ad nauseam a political view about the Union Flag not being flown at Ravenhill and the playing of the British National Anthem. A few politicians joined in.

Most people - and I know this will upset the highly vociferous 'people of Ulster' minority - couldn't give a monkey's.

Only a few months ago, when the English team played in Dublin at Croke Park, the British National Anthem was played (just as it is at Lansdowne Road) and the huge crowd cheered.

Perhaps the answer is for the IRFU to lease Windsor Park in Belfast and alternate Ireland's 'home' games on an 'away' basis between Windsor Park and Dublin.

That way, Rugby Fan can get used to not hearing the Soldier's Song for an Ireland 'home' game played 'away' every other 'home' match (geddit?).

To show that songs and flags don't really matter, perhaps we could adopt the Teletubbies theme tune as an All Ireland anthem and, to avoid an argument over a flag, we could fly a pair of old trousers (Donegal tweed perhaps?) purchased in a charity shop on Bangor's Main Street?

Every problem has a solution, dear boy.

Michael Robinson, Newcastle-upon-Tyne

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