Competitive hurling graces Austria for the first time this Saturday as the Vienna Gaels host round one of the Cúltec European Hurling and Camogie Championship, sponsored by Bank Austria and the Irish Embassy, at SV Gerasdorf Stammersdorf, Teichgasse 1, 2201 Gerasdorf. Here’s Noel Fitzgerald with the news on what our players and supporters need to know before this weekend’s action.
Vienna Gaels fielding a strong hurling side as 2019 journey begins
After the rollercoaster ride of the 2018 season ended with our largest ever hurling squad representing the club at the final round in Amsterdam, our hurlers finished the season in second place of the overall shield competition. They’ll be hoping to go one better this season, and will start the new season with just as large a panel. Despite some notable absentees such as Barry Lunn and Peter Mongey, the Gaels have recruited high numbers, reflected in how many players will be making their debut for the Gaels at this tournament. Featuring this weekend for the first time will be Mark Reidy, Brian Eiffe, Eric Rearte, Ruairi Joyce, Fionnán Garvey and Victor Deseille. Coach Kilian Smith returns this season and will face the kind of challenge every European GAA manager would love to have in having a large panel to choose from on the day.
Vienna Gaels field camogie players once again
Previously represented by Katie Riley in camogie, this year the Gaels are proud to have two ladies representing the club this weekend, as Rachel Minogue and Hannah Riedler follow up their footballing debuts three weeks ago with their camogie debuts with the club. Joining up with Berlin GAA for the day, we wish them all the best and to play hard!
Our men’s team face into a tough group to start the day, taking on the perennially strong GSC Luxembourg at 10.10, before facing last year’s surprise packages, Hamburg GAA at 11.20. Depending on their results in those games, they will either be taking part in a cup semi-final at 14.10 or a shield semi-final at 13.30. Meanwhile, our ladies with Berlin GAA will face Holland Gaels at 09.30, Hamburg GAA at 11.05 and Belgium GAA at 12.40 before then having either a 3/4 place playoff at 14.20 or a final at 15.00.
How to get there?
First games of the day will throw in at 09.00, with the last game being the hurling cup final at 15.30. To reach SV Gerasdorf by public transport take the S2 train, stopping at many of Vienna’s railway stations (Landstraße/Wien Mitte, Hauptbahnhof, Meidling, Floridsdorf, Praterstern), which go directly to Gerasdorf Railway Station (Gerasdorf b.Wien Bahnhof). These trains for Gerasdorf go in direction of Wolkersdorf im Weinviertel or Mistelbach/Zaya. The S2 goes at 30 minute intervals. Journey time is approximately 25 minutes. Alternative route: Take the underground U1 (red line) to Leopoldau at the vey north end of the line. Switch to the S2 train or the 125 bus for the remaining short hop to Gerasdorf. From Gerasdorf Railway Station it is approximately a 20 minute walk from the train station to the
stadium. It is also reasonably priced to reach the fields by Uber, depending on where you are starting from in the city.
Awards dinner, afterparty and historical walking tour
On the evening of the tournament, a sumptuous banquet shall take place in the “Schutzhaus Zukunft”, a traditional Austrian restaurant. Dinner will be served from 19:30 and will be followed by the awards ceremony. After the dinner and awards ceremony the fun and frolics will move onto Flanagan’s Irish Pub in the historic centre of Vienna at roughly 22:30. Libations to quench the thirst of sportsmen and sportswomen will be served late into the night and live music will be laid on for the event.
The following morning, Vienna Gaels GAA have arranged a free of charge historical walking tour of old Vienna for the Sunday forenoon. What better way to unwind after the strains of physical competition and those of the after party than to amble through the city’s enchanting streets and learn its lore of yesteryear?
Time and place: Sunday 11.30 in front of the church on Minoritenplatz by the Minoritenplatz exit of the Herrengasse U3 stop (orange line) in Vienna’s First District.
Follow our progress on the day!
With such a busy weekend of events ahead of us, stay in touch by following us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and the Vienna Gaels WhatsApp group. There are even whispers of Facebook Live coverage of selected games! We are very much looking forward to a wonderful event, and hope to have the support of all of our members, supporters and friends, both in Austria and throughout the continent.