Munster magic at Shannon Airport as Heineken Cup stars return to heroes’ welcome
09 April 2013
The clock rolled back almost five years at the weekend at Shannon Airport as celebratory scenes not enjoyed since the 2008 Heineken Cup victory took hold at the airport on Sunday evening as the Munster team returned victorious from their quarter final victory in London.
Scores of fans turned up on Sunday night hours after a simple tweet from the airport’s twitter account @shannon_airport satisfied fan’s request for the return flight details.
In scenes reminiscent of previous Heineken Cup victories, in 2005 and 2008, Paul O’Connell and his team stepped out to a rapturous welcome in the arrivals area of the airport terminal shortly after touching down at 9.25 p.m.
“The atmosphere was electric. The minute they stepped into the baggage area you could see from the smiles on their faces just what it meant to the players,” said Carmel Donnellan, Duty Manager at the airport on Sunday night.
Having the fans waiting for them to come out made it even better. There was a great roar when they came out and you could see it meant so much to the players. Some travelled for an hour or more to get here and they weren’t disappointed.
We saw it at Shannon many times before when they came home after big wins in the Heineken Cup and Sunday was as good as any of them. The great thing is that the players never disappoint the fans. They stayed here again on Sunday night for as long as the fans wanted, signing autographs and standing into photos. You could see it meant as much to them as it did the fans.
The build-up to the semi-final has started already and win or lose they’ll return to another great welcome at Shannon.”
With the demand for seats to the South of France set to be at a premium, Shannon Airport is delighted that fans will get the opportunity to travel through the airport directly to Montpellier. Flights are available with Ryanair and can be booked on ryanair.com Fans will be notified of any further services on www.shannonairport.ie.
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