Wexford LFC set new world record for most players in GAA match
History was made in Parc Charman recently as 645 people took to the pitch in a bid to help Wexford Ladies Football Club get into the Guinness Book of World Records.
The club successfully beat the standing record of 399 for the most number of players taking part in a Gaelic football exhibition match when crowds from across Wexford joined them on bank holiday Monday. Despite extremely wet conditions, Wexford club PR Sharon Drennan said that they were very happy with the turnout.
'It was unfortunate that the weather was horrible but that didn't stop people coming along. A lot of people who hadn't preregistered even arrived on the day to see if they could take part. The weather did not put them off,' she said.
The rules of the day were straightforward. Each player had to touch the ball and be on the pitch for at least 15 minutes. Up to thirty people were playing at each time, both men and women of all backgrounds.
According to Sharon, they involved participants of all ages, with varying levels of experience in the game. One team was made up solely of family members, while 20 of Wexford's clubs also took part in the event. Despite the successful day, Sharon said it was 'a bit disappointing' not to receive support from the remaining clubs in the county. However, she said that one of these clubs has since been in contact to offer them a donation.
Sporting stars such as Red Barry, Mary O'Leary, Assumpta Cullen and Maryanne Murphy also played ball on the day in support of Wexford Ladies.
Bad weather on the day prevented some of the side activities from going ahead, such as face-painting, bouncy castles and a duck pond. Despite this, Sharon said everyone was happy that the main event could run.
'The match went ahead which was the main thing and the atmosphere was only fantastic,' she said. 'Anyone who played it said that it was brilliant craic. There was such a buzz about the place.'
The organisers of the event will now send the details to the officials presiding over Guinness World Records, who will run through the details before sending certificates to all of the participants. The record will then be placed into a future edition of the Guinness Book of World Records.
Along with beating a record, the main aim of the event was to raise funds for Wexford Ladies Football and with a total of X raised, it proved to be a success. Organisers also hoped to boost recognition of ladies football in Wexford and beyond.
'We wanted to help to get ladies football on the map because as everyone knows, we're the underdogs of the sporting world,' said Sharon. 'This is improving majorly though and hopefully will continue to do so.'
Money is still coming in, but the event has raised approximately €3,000 to date.