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'Spillane hotline' jammed as desperate fans seek tickets

Louise Hogan

THE Spillane hotline has been hopping. Disappointed hopefuls, in the Kingdom of Kerry at least, have been dialling the number of the famous Templenoe family in a desperate bid to make it into those famous stands on Sunday to see their heroes contest the All-Ireland Senior Football Final.

With tickets being offered for over €1,000 on eBay, a last minute ring-around is always worth a shot.

Cara Spillane (21), the daughter of Kerry legend and sports pundit Pat Spillane, said the home phone had been ringing non-stop with calls from ticket-seeking friends and family.

"I'm going to watch it with friends on the television. I could have got a ticket but, in solidarity with all the friends who couldn't go, we'll enjoy it somewhere else," Ms Spillane, who will return to UCC the day after the clash for her final year studying Law and Irish, said.

"All the family will be up in Croke Park -- dad will be working for RTE, and my mom, brother Pat, and sister Shona will be watching," she said.

Pat Spillane Jnr (14) is on the South Kerry development squad and Shona (19) also plays.

"I'm the black sheep," the Assets Agency model quipped.

"Particularly with my brother at that age the run-up to an All-Ireland is exciting.

"The traditional All-Ireland day is: we all meet in the Hill 16 pub and go to Mulligan's afterwards. Family friends fly in from London for it," she added.

It has proved one of the most anticipated clashes in years, with Croke Park bosses admitting they could easily fill the 82,300-seater stadium twice over.

Thousands of ticketless fans will be watching it on the small screen in pubs and hotels after a proposal to erect big screens in Dublin city centre failed to get the green light.

A spokesman for Dublin City Council said the council, gardai and the Dublin County GAA Board felt people would have sufficient access to the match as it was on free-to-air television.

The Dublin Chamber of Commerce has forecast a boost for businesses in the capital over the weekend.

Irish Independent

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