Saturday 19 January 2019

Welsh fans paint the town red as they flood in for big match

Front from left, Welsh fans Dionne Munn, Louise Alley and Sarah Jarvis start celebrating early
Front from left, Welsh fans Dionne Munn, Louise Alley and Sarah Jarvis start celebrating early

Dublin was invaded by an army of roaring Welsh rugby fans as they painted the town red last night before their team take on Ireland today.

Fay Jones (58) was among a group of friends from Blackwood in South Wales who took the ferry across the Irish Sea to soak up the atmosphere in Dublin before the kick-off in today's Aviva Stadium showdown.


While none of the group were able to secure tickets for the Six Nations clash, Fay said they were happy enough to take in the action in a local pub.

She added that it was a case of "lager with breakfast, wine with lunch and gin and tonics after that".

"It's fantastic," she said as the group got the party started early at the Mercantile pub on Dame Street.

"The Irish are just so friendly and welcoming - it's always the way."

Sarah Jarvis (37), from Cwmbran, is hoping it will be third time lucky when she watches the match in a pub in Temple Bar today.

It is her third visit to the capital and she wasted no time having fun with five of her friends.

"Dublin's the place to be. It's absolutely amazing," she said.

For Lauren Davies (28), from Neath, her first visit to Ireland with her husband Richard (28) didn't disappoint.

"When we've gone to matches with Ireland in Cardiff, it's always been a fantastic atmosphere and being here is the same. It's fantastic," she said.

Meanwhile, Irish rugby legend John Hayes believes Ireland can beat Wales today, but warned it won't be easy.

"They will be a tough prospect. It will be close, but I think Ireland will win it," he said.

"Wales come over to Dublin and they always travel here without any fear, and they'll come out hoping to get their Six Nations back on track."

'The Bull' Hayes was one of the attendees at the launch of the first ever permanent exhibition on the Irish flag at the GPO Witness History Visitor Centre on O'Connell Street.

The exhibition commemorates the 170th anniversary of the first flying of the Irish tricolour.

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