Wednesday 26 November 2014

A rapturous welcome home for our Irish rugby heroes

Cormac Murphy

Published 16/03/2014 | 17:01

16 March 2014;  Rob Kearney with Ireland fans Ben Purcell, 19, and Charlie O'Reilly, form Dublin.  Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Rob Kearney with Ireland fans Ben Purcell, 19, and Charlie O'Reilly, form Dublin Picture: Caroline Quinn
Paul O Connell poses for photo with fans
Brian O'Driscoll with Garda escort. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland coach Joe Schmidt and Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland fans await the arrival of the team. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell with Ireland coach Joe Schmidt, left. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland's Cian Healy poses for a 'selfie' with a fan. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland fans await the arrival of the team. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland's Dave Kearney celebrates. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Young Ireland fans Aaron Ennis, 9, left, and his brother Jamie, 6, from Edenderry, Offaly, await the arrival of the team. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell lifts the trophy with Ireland fans Charlie O'Reilly, 18, and Ben Purcell, 19, from Dublin. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Brian O'Driscoll greets fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell signs autograph for fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Amy Huberman poses with fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn

The Irish rugby team were given a hero's welcome today as more than 1,000 fans turned out to greet them.

The roar was deafening when captain Paul O'Connell finally appeared at the terminal 2 arrivals gate at Dublin Airport carrying the Six Nations trophy.

The flight had been delayed following yesterday's 22-20 triumph over France in Paris but it was worth the wait for everyone who had made the journey.

O'Connell, retiring legend Brian O'Driscoll and the rest of the squad were immediately swamped by their adoring public.

"It's great to be back with the trophy. There was about five or 10 minutes there towards the end of the game where I didn't think we'd be coming back with it," O'Connell said.

"I didn't think we'd have waited as long after 2009 (when Ireland won the Grand Slam). I thought we would have kicked on. It's a great feeling and an incredible reception here from the supporters today as well," he added.

Ireland fans await the arrival of the team.
Ireland fans await the arrival of the team.
Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell lifts the Six Nations trophy with Ireland fans Charlie O'Reilly, 18, and Ben Purcell, 19, from Dublin.
Amy Huberman poses with fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Young Ireland fans Aaron Ennis, 9, left, and his brother Jamie, 6, from Edenderry, Offaly, await the arrival of the team.
Ireland's Dave Kearney celebrates. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Picture: Caroline Quinn
A young fan manages to lift the Six Nations trophy as Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell signs autographs for fans. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Brian O'Driscoll greets fans as the Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Ireland coach Joe Schmidt poses for a photo with Ireland fan Liz Keenan, from Cooley, Co. Louth, and her son Oisin, 4 months.
Ireland Captain Paul O'Connell signs autographs for fans.
16 March 2014; Brian O'Driscoll greets fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
16 March 2014; Amy Huberman poses with fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
16 March 2014; Rob Kearney with Ireland fans Ben Purcell, 19, and Charlie O'Reilly, form Dublin. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
16 March 2014; Brian O'Driscoll greets fans. Ireland rugby team return to Dublin Airport after winning Six Nations 2014. Dublin Airport, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn

Promoted articles

Read More

Promoted articles

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport