New York Police Department In Ireland To Play The Students Of Trinity College Dublin.

Shamrock Bowl Conference heavyweights Trinity College will welcome the NYPD – New York Police Department, aka “New York’s Finest” – to Santry Sports Ground in Dublin this Sunday. With the Irish American Football League entering the off-season period, this game will offer the opportunity for both clubs to close off their year in style with an exciting exhibition game.

Trinity College finished their 2016 regular season with a (2-6) record, securing their place in the playoffs for another consecutive season. A number of their players including receiver Conor O’Dwyer will be representing Ireland this weekend against the Netherlands, but Trinity College still expect a number of players to be available for the game. They will also be recruiting players from local clubs the Louth Mavericks, North Kildare Reapers and University College Dublin especially for Sunday’s fixture.

Ireland - NYPD action 2016

Their opponents are none other the New York Police Department, who are members of the National Public Safety Football League (NSPFL) a semi-professional football league comprised of several public service agencies from around the United States. They will provide a very tough challenge for the young students.

There has been a number of proposals from US Police Departments to play games in Ireland in previous years, but few have come to fruition.

However with the successful hosting of this game now a few short days away, we spoke with Trinity’s Conor O’Dwyer on how this game was made possible.

‘The Philadelphia Police Department played a game against a team in Ireland a few years ago’, Conor explains. ‘However, since then there’s been a few times where US PD teams have tried to plan games against Irish teams, but none have worked out.’

‘Originally, the NYPD were in contact with the Belfast Trojans. They were also looking to travel over with the Philadelphia PD and contacted us as a possible opponent for them. Belfast ended up not being able to play the game so we decided we would host the NYPD instead.’

Ireland - Trinity College action 2016

Photo: Jessica Packenham-Money

There’s plenty of benefits in this game for Trinity, considering the excitement surrounding football in Ireland in recent months. Earlier in the year, American Division III college team, the Sewanee Tigers of Tennessee travelled across the Atlantic to face the Belfast Trojans in Belfast. With the NYPD making the same journey, its boasts potential for the future of football in Ireland by hosting games of this magnitude.

The match will give a number of players their first opportunity of playing a team outside of Ireland. It will be great learning experience that Trinity College hope to take into the upcoming season.

‘It would be great to win against the NYPD, but we know it will be tough as they’re a big and physical side with lots of experience. For the upcoming season, we hope to get back to winning ways. We had a tough season last year, it was a bit of a transitional year for us. We feel like we have built a strong base to build on now and hope to get back to playing the kind of football we were playing in the two years previous when we reached the Shamrock bowl.’

It will be another big occasion for local American football that can only improve the publicity of a minority sport in the country. The regular season may be over, but there is still some excellent football to be played. Hopefully this will open the door to more opportunities for teams to come to Ireland in the future.

Trinity College versus the New York Police takes place this Saturday at Santry Sports Grounds, Dublin 3pm.

Scott Morrow
Scott is an aspiring Sports Journalist who enjoys writing about all things American Football. He is a regular contributor to AFI Review and also writes for both NFL Ireland and Double Coverage, and currently plays for the Belfast Trojans. He also supports the Green Bay Packers.
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