There's a different kind of wooden bat coming to Citi Field this weekend.
The popular Irish sport of hurling is in town for the 'New York Hurling Classic,' a four-team, three-game tournament on Saturday, November 16. Limerick will defend the Players Champions Cup, having won the 2018 Fenway Hurling Classic, with Wexford, Tipperary, and Kilkenny also competing.
Hurling, widely believed to be the world's oldest field game, is an ancient warrior sport that dates all the way back to 1272 BC. It combines agility, strength and intensity, earning it the reputation as the "fastest game on grass" among its loyal and passionate followers.
Imagine a cross between lacrosse and field hockey. You get three points for a goal, and you pass the sliotar (ball) with the hurley (wooden stick). The sliotar can be caught in the hand and carried for not more than four steps, struck in the air, or struck on the ground with the hurl. It can be kicked, or slapped with an open hand (the hand pass) for short-range passing. A player who wants to carry the ball for more than four steps has to bounce or balance the sliotar on the end of the stick, and the ball can only be handled twice while in his possession.
Long story short, it's a lot harder than it looks, as Ryan Field found out in the latest Field Trip.
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