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Linfield watch and learn at Casement

A tall, lean figure conducted a watching brief from the Casement Park VIP area as Tyrone beat Antrim in the Ulster Senior Football Championship on Sunday.

Linfield Safety Officer Gary Steele was there to observe at first hand the crowd control and match presentation criteria implemented by the Ulster Council on big match occasions.

The Council, along with the Ulster Branch IRFU and the Irish FA, is currently engaged in actively pursuing a strategy under the safe sports grounds banner and Steele admitted afterwards that he had been “highly impressed” by what he had witnessed.

“There was a crowd of about 18,000 there on Sunday and the occasion went off wonderfully well,” said Steele.

“Soccer, rugby and GAA are still hugely supported in the province and it is imperative that we strive to ensure that the comfort and safety of our patrons remains a priority.

“The fact that I was wearing a lemon-coloured shirt was purely coincidental, but I thought that Antrim really played with great heart in the second-half.”

Antrim spokesman Jim Murray said that they were delighted to have had the Linfield man as a guest on Sunday.

“We have an excellent relationship with Gary and I would like to think that he was happy with his welcome at Casement Park,” said Murray, a former Antrim secretary who is currently overseeing a detailed assessment of the major GAA grounds here in relation to wireless communication facilities.

Belfast Telegraph