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Hurling, lovingly known as the “fastest game on grass” is an Irish sport that’s been played for over 3000 years. There are two teams of 15 players (called “hurlers”) and two H-shaped goals, similar to rugby. The object of the game is to get the ball (the “sliotar”) over the bar for one point or through the goal posts for three points. Players use a stick (“a hurley”) to hit the ball downfield like a field hockey strike or to pick the ball up and hit it through the air, like a cross between baseball and lacrosse.
The women’s version is called Camogie and both Hurling and Camogie are wildly popular in Ireland, with teams competing to win the coveted “All-Ireland” title.
The game is organised from Parish level to Regional to Inter County – it caters for all levels of fitness, skill and bravery. The less experienced play in a League called “Junior”, next grade is “Intermediate” and the elite level is called “Senior”. There is a category called “Junior B” that is fondly regarded for many reasons. It is usually played by players at the beginning or at the end of their playing career, the younger players have the advantage of speed and fitness but the older ones have more guile and experience. Some of the strategies involve fairly dubious tactics when the referee is looking elsewhere.
I find that Irish ex-pats in particular miss Hurling when they are abroad and this has been the spark that has led to the foundation of Hurling clubs in the unlikeliest of places, like South Korea and Argentina. The evolution of live streaming means that people can watch the games from all over the globe.
While people love to play and watch the game, Hurling and Camogie themed gifts can be difficult to find because it is such a niche regional sport. We have a number of Hurling-themed gifts in our website, ranging from Sterling Silver Hurling and Camogie necklaces to Hurling keyrings with your chosen county’s colours to show your support, no matter where you are.