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Dressing rooms reopen for Dublin SFC as Kilmacud reign supreme

Dressing rooms reopened in Dublin for the first time since March 2020 as Kilmacud Crokes completed a historic double

Both the GAA and the Government allowed dressing rooms to re-open under certain conditions in October.

Dublin GAA decided not to re-open despite the loosening of restrictions. 

With the weather worsening, Dublin’s County board made a conscious decision and opened the dressing rooms. 

Member of Dublin’s County board Johnny O’ Brien believes the ‘’correct decision’’ was made. 

‘’I think the correct decision was to open the dressing rooms and give the teams a choice on whether to go inside or not,” O’Brien told The Liberty.

‘’The conditions are getting worse these days and with the protocols the GAA put in place in relation to the dressing rooms I think it was only fair to give the teams a choice.”

Johnny O’ Brien, Dublin county board member

“It’s not compulsory to go into the training rooms, the teams can still stay outside, but we just felt that lads playing for 60 minutes and then not getting a shower, with the fact that most of the players are vaccinated that opening them was fair enough,” O’ Brien added.

Photo courtesy of Jonathon Pearl.

With dressing rooms now open, Kilmacud Crokes completed the double in Dublin, beating St Jude’s 1-7 to 1-6. 

With the game set to go to extra time, a period of two ten minutes, Kilmacud substitute Callum Pearson kicked a 64th-minute winner to give Kilmacud a ninth Dublin Senior Football championship. 

The contest began slow, with no score from either team inside 25 minutes.

The first score resulted in a goal by Alan Connolly as he finished low into the Kilmacud net.

Former Dublin footballer Paul Mannion registered Kilmacuds first score, while Judes responded from a close in free which, left the scoreline reading 1-1 to 0-1 at halftime. 

Heading into the final quarter of the game, Jude’s held a four-point lead (1-4 to 0-3). 

Crokes started the last quarter in the same fashion they were going to finish it, with a score from the ever-present Mannion. 

The decisive play of the game came in the 51st minute as Cian O’Connor stepped up and rifled a shot to the back of the Jude’s net. 

With the game set to go to extra time, Crokes last attack resulted in a Callum Pearson point from the narrowest of angles which sparked wild celebrations in the stand. 

Photo courtesy of Jonathon Pearl.

Crokes manager Robbie Brennan was delighted after the final whistle, and is now looking forward to the Leinster Championship. 

“It is just a fantastic achievement for all of us to be honest. We won this championship a number of years ago and today is as special as that,” said Brennan.

Crokes will now play Wolfe Tones of Meath in the quarter-final of the Leinster championship, a team Brennan knows all too well. 

‘’It’s my Dad’s club – my Dad won a championship with them in 1974,” said Brennan. “They’re the same colours as us, so Dad has his Wolfe Tones flags outside his house, and he won’t have to take them down.”

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