Cut-price ticket deals for GAA championship games
Cuts in admission prices for the All-Ireland championships up to and including the semi-finals are almost certainly on the way.
Reductions are not expected in single ticket prices for the provincial championships, but a range of extra cut-price package deals for clubs, families and groups will be on offer.
It is understood that details of the amended All-Ireland championship prices will be put before the next Central Council meeting, while the provincial councils will shortly finalise plans for their package deals.
Tickets prices for the All-Ireland finals will remain the same. Admission costs to the Allianz League have been reduced this season, so there's a natural logic in extending it to the championships.
It will lead to reduced revenue, but the GAA are hoping that the special package deals for groups and families will minimise the impact of the cuts. Among the changes that Leinster are planning to implement at Croke Park is an equal pricing policy for the Davin Stand and Hill 16.
“Package deals worked well last year and we'll have others in place this year,” said Leinster CEO, Michael Delaney.
Leinster's championship income was down almost 14pc to €4.92m last year.
Munster's championship income was down was down marginally; Connacht increased by seven per cent, thanks mainly to the replayed Sligo v Galway semi-final, while Ulster showed a slight decrease.
Ulster Council President Aogan Farrell said their figures had been boosted by big attendances at their club football championships. He also noted that while the yield from stand tickets held up well for the inter-county championships, there had had been a drop in the terrace turn-out.
Meanwhile, Brian Mallon may have emerged as the hero of Armagh’s last-gasp victory over Monaghan in Division Two of the Allianz Football League on Sunday but he does not know if this will assure him of a starting slot against Down on Saturday night at Pairc Esler, Newry.
Mallon, pitched into action as a substitute by manager Paddy O’Rourke with only a few minutes remaining, stabbed in the only goal of the game after Monaghan goalkeeper Mark Keogh had mishandled.
“Brian did well when he went in against Monaghan while a number of other players also stepped up to the mark,” says O’Rourke.
“Down will be ready for us and the fact that they are unbeaten will make it even more interesting.”
Kevin Dyas played perhaps his best game for the Orchard County against Monaghan while Brendan Donaghy was majestic at full-back and Charlie Vernon emerged as a key figure in the middle third of the park.