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The night of the Miracle Match.....

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    The night of the Miracle Match.....

    Anyone here rememeber the craic in Clohessys that night? Never seen anything like it before or since. It was just magical. There were scrums between opposing fans in the pub, not the sinbin, actually in the bar. Seamus (head doorman) let them off with it, i think he might actually have been involved in one of them
    Sing offs, constant banter. It was just the greatest night I or many other ever had supporting Munster.
    The Glaws fans were there in huge numbers and it was simply mighty.

    The following day around limerick was a sight to behold. Gloucester jersey after gloucester jersey after gloucester jersey walking around in a zombified state, just back in town from the various estates around the suburbs with sore heads and sore mickeys

    I'd say many a half breed was conceived that night..........!!

    Days like that are few and far between and Sale apart, we havent had another night like it since, even incl the HC wins.

    There is just something special when the lads across the pond come to town.

    Lets hope for something even remotely similar Saturday night in town.

    Welcome Glaws, with open arms, but at the end of the day, GGWWWWAAANN MMMUUNNSSTTEERR!!
    Last edited by Jackdaniels; 17th-October-2013, 10:38.

    #2
    Brilliant. Thanks Jack
    "There are a lot of points that we’ve left behind and this is with a young group. That probably tells you what they’re capable of and that they’re a very good side.

    Probably next year or the year after next they will take some stopping"

    Anthony Foley, May 2016. Axel RIP

    Comment


      #3
      Tend to disagree, the nights after the HEC wins and the night of the All Blacks game were just as special.

      Comment


        #4
        I've never cared for Clohessy's either tbh.
        Yorn desh born, der ritt de gitt der gue,
        Orn desh, dee born desh, de umn bork! bork! bork!

        Comment


          #5
          Was in there both nights. The night before was nuts, singsongs etc. After the game was in the Sinbin because we couldnt get into Claws it was so busy, Henry Paul and all the Glaws players came in and took a fierce slagging in good spirits, mental, mental night
          My computer thinks I'm gay
          What's the difference anyway
          When all the people do all day
          Is stare into a phone

          Comment


            #6
            only thing to touch it since was Docs the night of the Sale game. Simply Epic.

            Comment


              #7
              I don't know who wrote this, so apologies to the writer. I copied it
              from this website at the time. It's worth reading:

              ------------------------------------------
              On the 18th of January, 2003 I watched the most dramatic show of my life
              in full colour in Thomond Park. This was "as good as it gets". You
              always know when you’re witnessing something completely unbelievable
              for those of us who were in Thomond Park, we knew oh yes we knew!

              I remember sometime during the second half of that game saying to
              myself "make sure you remember everything that has ever happened today
              and keep a visual memory of these scenes for the rest of your life".
              Whenever I know that I am going through an experience like this I always
              try to take in the peripheral stuff as well.

              I was perched on a step in the West Stand with the assorted media and
              sporting journalists of our time seated on my left-hand side. Somewhere
              behind me I could hear Len Dineens voice keeping Limerick 95fm "Live"
              enthralled. They should rename the station Limerick 95fm "Live, kicking
              and rearing to go" after Lens commentary last Saturday. I often wondered
              how journalists and sporting commentators manage to keep going with
              their work in a middle of a really tight game? Normally they do keep a
              composure of sorts and readjust their voices and scripts in tune with
              the mood and excitement of the day. Not so on Saturday. As the game
              moved from ruck to maul, quick hands, grubbers, back in a ruck, more
              mauling, I watched as Gerry Thornley, Brendan Fanning and Co. abandoned
              their work and nearly threw their laptops off the West Stand as they one
              by one got to their feet and completely willed on Munster’s last try and
              conversion.

              Then they turned to each other incredulously and said in unison ..."how
              are we going to write about this ... how do we put all this in print and
              try and give the reader any idea as to what has happened here".

              Afterwards I heard that (RTE Radio commentator) Michael Corcoran's finale was out of this world.
              The following Monday night I was listening to Vincent Browne and at
              10.55pm he said "And now just to prove that there is a God". Then he
              started playing Michael Corcorans last minutes of commentary. I closed
              my eyes and I was back in Thomond park for the briefest of minutes. My
              God Maurice Nelligan should have been called to resuscitate Michael
              Corcoran he nearly keeled over and his voice broke through to soprano
              levels on the radio "A try a try a try for Munster oh my God .all
              hell is breaking loose in Thomond park .the place is going
              ballistic ..."

              For those of us who were there, we know what he was talking about. Then
              Vincent Browne played "Stand up and Fight" and my mind wandered back to
              the carnival that broke out after the final whistle went. Fathers
              abandoned sons, mothers abandoned daughters, husbands abandoned wives
              all sprinting for their lives onto the pitch to touch those Munster
              lads. Strangers were hugging strangers. Fellas wearing ties broke out of
              all formality and jumped with joy. Oul fellas were crying (nothing to
              do with the hip flasks!) Best friends clung to each other. Old rugby
              pals smiled and looked at each other without having to say anything.
              Club officials from all walks of rugby hugged and celebrated. Kids
              looked on and for once were delighted at being told not to walk on the
              pitch walk on the pitch .... sure they could dig it up and take some of
              it home! Such a wave of energy I have never seen in my life. The Munster
              Branch can cancel it’s account with ESB.

              Forever more, Thomond park will be shining brightly. It was the greatest
              mass orgy of celebration that I have ever seen.

              The tension was unbelievable in the second half. There was a guy on my
              right hand side shouting for Munster in what seemed like an Aussie
              accent. I said to him "where are you from?" and he said "Sydney" and I
              said "Did you come all the way from Sydney for this match" and he said
              "No, I’m Alan Gaffney’s son!" and we both cracked up laughing. It
              dispersed the tension for only a split second I might add!

              Then there was the added hype of not knowing what we needed to qualify
              in the second half. There was a guy from the ERC to my left and he had
              what seemed like acres of statistics about what Munster needed to
              qualify. No amount of speed reading on my part could figure it out. Pat
              Geraghty (Media Liason with Munster rugby) was running up and down to
              the ERC guy trying to get the permutations and relay them back down to
              Jerry Holland (Team Manager) on the sideline. Meanwhile in the RTE station, George Hook et
              al were nailing down the results of the other games with Garrett
              Fitzgerald (CEO Munster Rugby). Still it wasn’t clear what we needed.
              Finally, finally, finally around the 77th minute someone shouted ."a
              converted try .we need a converted try". Jesus, we were in
              business COME ON MUNSTER!

              Oh what a day hands up who has ever seen Ronan O’Gara jump 6 feet
              into the air after a try was scored? Ronan is normally ‚cool’
              personified. By God did he jump after John Kellys try ..jump I’d say he
              could have cleared the goal post in Thomond park. The lads had been
              gripped by the crowd fever on the pitch. At one stage Donncha
              O’Callaghan turned around to the crowd with clenched fists and urged on
              the cheering and support. This one was for Munster rugby supporters
              everywhere.

              Sitting behind me on that step in the West Stand was Donie Howard (who
              is involved in the Munster Branch IRFU referees association). Now Donie
              is moving on in years and has recently had a hip operation. After John
              Kelly got Munsters 80th minute try, I’m not joking you but I thought
              Donie was going to body surf off the West Stand down onto the pitch.

              And then the final whistle.

              ...more follows
              Munster – Champions of Europe 2006, 2008, 2019.

              Comment


                #8
                continued

                I play rugby and as my team mates will testify, I sometimes collapse on
                the field when I hear the final whistle, especially if it is a real give
                it your all and then give some more kind of game. I usually feel
                physically and emotionally drained. I can only imagine how those players
                felt. I’m sure thousands of feelings flowed through them. First and
                foremost they probably wanted to find every single squad member, mentor,
                family and friend that they ever had. Then they could have opted for a
                massive pile up on the pitch or maybe indulged in wild singing, hugging
                and really give meaning to the words "dance like there’s no-one
                watching". However it wasn’t just a day for the players. . there was the
                small matter of the other 13,000 in attendance . People who wanted to
                hug the lads and tell them how wonderful they were but it was more than
                that for the supporters we needed to touch the players in an effort to
                make something tangible out of the intangible that had just been played
                out in front of us.

                Some of the players were carried shoulder high. Jim Williams and Donncha
                O’Callaghan launched into something which was a cross between an Irish
                jig and Waltzing Matilda whatever it was it caught the momentum of the
                crowd around them and soon the whole assembly on the pitch were throwing
                shapes and bopping up and down in unison. Surely Thomond park was not
                built with the intention of "doing the hop" on it with 21 inch studs .
                so what ..this was Woodstock in Thomond park.


                Somehow the players made it into the tunnel ."We want more we want
                more".
                I remember thinking "how did the Gloucester fellas get off the pitch at
                all with the invasion that had taken place?" I looked around for a sign
                of any Gloucester jerseys. I picked up nothing on my visual radar, but
                the antennae on the Munster radar was going berserk. "We want more . we
                want more". And then they appeared .all sweaty, smiling, throwing their
                heads back in laughter, still embracing, arms around each other and
                drinking gallons of lucozade sport.

                Then onto the steps of the West Stand and linked together as a team they
                started to sing "Stand up and fight". All eyes were focused on them .
                correction all eyes were staring up at them with an expression that is
                usually reserved for the Pope. We have new patron saints of rugby,
                namely the Munster Senior team of 2002/03.

                The stories will run and run and I am sure that you all have your own
                personal memoirs of the day. You should write it down . write down that
                day from start to finish because this will be passed down through many
                generations.

                Brendan Fanning got it really right in the Sunday Independent on the
                19th of January .. it was one of those occasions when you just had to
                go somewhere really quiet and take some time on your own to actually
                reflect on what had happened and if it had happened and how it had
                happened and please God do not let me wake up and realise it was a
                dream. NO this was not Jason McAteer having a wild dream of winning a
                soccer world cup with his last minute goal in a Carlsberg ad. This did
                happen. Carlsberg should do an ad with Ronan O’Gara dreaming of winning
                a place in the Quarter Final of the Heineken Cup 2003 with his last
                minute conversion. Probably the best kick in the world. Fact is stranger
                than fiction and sometimes reality can be stranger than dreams.

                As the mayhem was somehow dying down there were references to this being
                better than ’78 or ’92. One fella on the East terrace to the other

                "This was better than '78."

                "No, no tisn’t"

                "Yes yes it is, cos in ’78 the two sides started at Nil - Nil"

                "Jaysus!"

                And with that the enormity of what had been achieved by the Munster
                Rugby team of 2002/03 hit home like a thunderbolt!

                You think the crowd were overawed by Munster’s achievement. I met some
                of the team members later on that night. Mossie Lawlor was sitting on
                his own on a bar stool with a huge grin on his face and he couldn’t
                talk. He just couldn’t put it into words. Anthony Foley was standing in
                a corner and seemed to be completely mesmerised by what was taking place
                around him. What a record breaking day for him. Jim Williams was sitting
                beside his wife Megan and it looked like the two of them were going to
                apply for the freedom of the province of Munster and by God would they
                get it. Jim said afterwards that this to him was better than any game
                he had ever played with ACT Brumbies or wait for it .even being part of
                the Australian World Cup win in 1999. Wow!

                I was also talking to Peter Stringer about Munster’s first try and later
                on it struck me that there were two apostle names involved in the first
                try – Peter and John (Andrew and James must have been unseeingly holding
                back the Gloucester lads!)

                They were all there .. engaging in good-natured banter between
                themselves and the general pub population around them. Every once in a
                while one of them would look at the other and just smile neither saying
                anything and yet speaking volumes with their expressions. Then I had
                another thought .practically the whole Munster squad that had written a
                new chapter in sporting history were out together in an ordinary pub in
                Limerick. They so wanted to be all together that night and you got the
                feeling that none of them wanted to separate from the other. Somehow I
                can’t imagine many other sporting teams being as close as these guys
                are. What a brilliant thing to be able to look each other in the eye and
                say "I was there today and I helped in this triumph for Munster rugby".
                How many of us saw Jason Holland sprinting from his first centre
                position to drive on the maul towards the end of the game? During the
                game I spotted Anthony Foley in the back line a few times and of course
                we all remember Mick O’Driscoll’s stint as a winger in the second half.
                These guys didn’t just play in their own positions as individuals and
                look after their own patches. They played for each other all day.

                I met Alan Gaffney in what I could only describe as a quietly reflective
                mood.. Anyone would think from looking at him that it was all in a days
                work for him. However when I started talking to him his face sprung into
                animation ."what an awesome game of rugby the best game of rugby I’ve
                ever seen in my life . still can’t quite take in all that has happened
                today". I could see the pride bursting out of his face. When Alan is
                older you can imagine an interviewer asking him "what was the greatest
                achievement of your life?" The answer will be on his lips before the
                question has been finished.
                "Munster v Gloucester, 18th January, 2003". No need to explain the whys
                and wherefores. The interviewer will kick himself for not having known
                the obvious.

                I was then introduced to Alan Gaffney’s wife Lorraine. She politely
                enquired if I knew where she could buy a Munster rugby supporters club
                scarf for a friend in Australia. At the same time I was
                thinking to myself "One Munster rugby scarf .. is that all you want
                Missus .God, I’ll get you every Munster rugby scarf in the world after
                today!"


                I spotted Paul Murray and Ian Fleming, who look after the team kit. "No
                need to wash the gear after todays game" I was thinking. Sure half the
                lads socks had been thrown into the crowd. Jerseys were already being
                framed in their uniquely dirty and sweaty state. Why would you spoil the
                jersey by washing it – sure you couldn’t or wouldn’t want to wash away
                the memories of this great day.

                Seeing is believing and thank you God that I along with all the rest of
                you was there to witness one of the greatest David v Goliath battles in
                my lifetime...ever!

                In one fell swoop this sporting spectacle eclipsed every other single
                sporting victory in my time. Biddy Earleys Clare hurling team of ’95,
                Dawn Run against Forgive ‚n Forget in Cheltenham, Sonia O’Sullivan and
                all her great races, Man Uniteds treble in ‚99 whatever you can think
                of they are all now relegated to Division one in my mind.

                None of us know for sure how much the lads can produce for the province
                going forward but we do know that the support and unwavering belief will
                always be behind Munster rugby. Let us keep this special sacred thing
                that Munster rugby has. Surely the whole rugby world must be looking on
                with envy at the Munster rugby team and the support that they have.

                Alan Gaffney and company ... we will never forget the Miracle Match in
                Munster!

                Ends
                Last edited by rathbaner; 17th-October-2013, 12:27.
                Munster – Champions of Europe 2006, 2008, 2019.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by rathbaner View Post
                  continued

                  I play rugby and as my team mates will testify, I sometimes collapse on
                  the field when I hear the final whistle, especially if it is a real give
                  it your all and then give some more kind of game. I usually feel
                  physically and emotionally drained. I can only imagine how those players
                  felt. I’m sure thousands of feelings flowed through them. First and
                  foremost they probably wanted to find every single squad member, mentor,
                  family and friend that they ever had. Then they could have opted for a
                  massive pile up on the pitch or maybe indulged in wild singing, hugging
                  and really give meaning to the words "dance like there’s no-one
                  watching". However it wasn’t just a day for the players. . there was the
                  small matter of the other 13,000 in attendance . People who wanted to
                  hug the lads and tell them how wonderful they were but it was more than
                  that for the supporters we needed to touch the players in an effort to
                  make something tangible out of the intangible that had just been played
                  out in front of us.

                  Some of the players were carried shoulder high. Jim Williams and Donncha
                  O’Callaghan launched into something which was a cross between an Irish
                  jig and Waltzing Matilda whatever it was it caught the momentum of the
                  crowd around them and soon the whole assembly on the pitch were throwing
                  shapes and bopping up and down in unison. Surely Thomond park was not
                  built with the intention of "doing the hop" on it with 21 inch studs .
                  so what ..this was Woodstock in Thomond park.


                  Somehow the players made it into the tunnel ."We want more we want
                  more".
                  I remember thinking "how did the Gloucester fellas get off the pitch at
                  all with the invasion that had taken place?" I looked around for a sign
                  of any Gloucester jerseys. I picked up nothing on my visual radar, but
                  the antennae on the Munster radar was going berserk. "We want more . we
                  want more". And then they appeared .all sweaty, smiling, throwing their
                  heads back in laughter, still embracing, arms around each other and
                  drinking gallons of lucozade sport.

                  Then onto the steps of the West Stand and linked together as a team they
                  started to sing "Stand up and fight". All eyes were focused on them .
                  correction all eyes were staring up at them with an expression that is
                  usually reserved for the Pope. We have new patron saints of rugby,
                  namely the Munster Senior team of 2002/03.

                  The stories will run and run and I am sure that you all have your own
                  personal memoirs of the day. You should write it down . write down that
                  day from start to finish because this will be passed down through many
                  generations.

                  Brendan Fanning got it really right in the Sunday Independent on the
                  19th of January .. it was one of those occasions when you just had to
                  go somewhere really quiet and take some time on your own to actually
                  reflect on what had happened and if it had happened and how it had
                  happened and please God do not let me wake up and realise it was a
                  dream. NO this was not Jason McAteer having a wild dream of winning a
                  soccer world cup with his last minute goal in a Carlsberg ad. This did
                  happen. Carlsberg should do an ad with Ronan O’Gara dreaming of winning
                  a place in the Quarter Final of the Heineken Cup 2003 with his last
                  minute conversion. Probably the best kick in the world. Fact is stranger
                  than fiction and sometimes reality can be stranger than dreams.

                  As the mayhem was somehow dying down there were references to this being
                  better than ’78 or ’92. One fella on the East terrace to the other

                  "This was better than '78."

                  "No, no tisn’t"

                  "Yes yes it is, cos in ’78 the two sides started at Nil - Nil"

                  "Jaysus!"

                  And with that the enormity of what had been achieved by the Munster
                  Rugby team of 2002/03 hit home like a thunderbolt!

                  You think the crowd were overawed by Munster’s achievement. I met some
                  of the team members later on that night. Mossie Lawlor was sitting on
                  his own on a bar stool with a huge grin on his face and he couldn’t
                  talk. He just couldn’t put it into words. Anthony Foley was standing in
                  a corner and seemed to be completely mesmerised by what was taking place
                  around him. What a record breaking day for him. Jim Williams was sitting
                  beside his wife Megan and it looked like the two of them were going to
                  apply for the freedom of the province of Munster and by God would they
                  get it. Jim said afterwards that this to him was better than any game
                  he had ever played with ACT Brumbies or wait for it .even being part of
                  the Australian World Cup win in 1999. Wow!

                  I was also talking to Peter Stringer about Munster’s first try and later
                  on it struck me that there were two apostle names involved in the first
                  try – Peter and John (Andrew and James must have been unseeingly holding
                  back the Gloucester lads!)

                  They were all there .. engaging in good-natured banter between
                  themselves and the general pub population around them. Every once in a
                  while one of them would look at the other and just smile neither saying
                  anything and yet speaking volumes with their expressions. Then I had
                  another thought .practically the whole Munster squad that had written a
                  new chapter in sporting history were out together in an ordinary pub in
                  Limerick. They so wanted to be all together that night and you got the
                  feeling that none of them wanted to separate from the other. Somehow I
                  can’t imagine many other sporting teams being as close as these guys
                  are. What a brilliant thing to be able to look each other in the eye and
                  say "I was there today and I helped in this triumph for Munster rugby".
                  How many of us saw Jason Holland sprinting from his first centre
                  position to drive on the maul towards the end of the game? During the
                  game I spotted Anthony Foley in the back line a few times and of course
                  we all remember Mick O’Driscoll’s stint as a winger in the second half.
                  These guys didn’t just play in their own positions as individuals and
                  look after their own patches. They played for each other all day.

                  I met Alan Gaffney in what I could only describe as a quietly reflective
                  mood.. Anyone would think from looking at him that it was all in a days
                  work for him. However when I started talking to him his face sprung into
                  animation ."what an awesome game of rugby the best game of rugby I’ve
                  ever seen in my life . still can’t quite take in all that has happened
                  today". I could see the pride bursting out of his face. When Alan is
                  older you can imagine an interviewer asking him "what was the greatest
                  achievement of your life?" The answer will be on his lips before the
                  question has been finished.
                  "Munster v Gloucester, 18th January, 2003". No need to explain the whys
                  and wherefores. The interviewer will kick himself for not having known
                  the obvious.

                  I was then introduced to Alan Gaffney’s wife Lorraine. She politely
                  enquired if I knew where she could buy a Munster rugby supporters club
                  scarf for a friend in Australia. At the same time I was
                  thinking to myself "One Munster rugby scarf .. is that all you want
                  Missus .God, I’ll get you every Munster rugby scarf in the world after
                  today!"


                  I spotted Paul Murray and Ian Fleming, who look after the team kit. "No
                  need to wash the gear after todays game" I was thinking. Sure half the
                  lads socks had been thrown into the crowd. Jerseys were already being
                  framed in their uniquely dirty and sweaty state. Why would you spoil the
                  jersey by washing it – sure you couldn’t or wouldn’t want to wash away
                  the memories of this great day.

                  Seeing is believing and thank you God that I along with all the rest of
                  you was there to witness one of the greatest David v Goliath battles in
                  my lifetime...ever!

                  In one fell swoop this sporting spectacle eclipsed every other single
                  sporting victory in my time. Biddy Earleys Clare hurling team of ’95,
                  Dawn Run against Forgive ‚n Forget in Cheltenham, Sonia O’Sullivan and
                  all her great races, Man Uniteds treble in ‚99 whatever you can think
                  of they are all now relegated to Division one in my mind.

                  None of us know for sure how much the lads can produce for the province
                  going forward but we do know that the support and unwavering belief will
                  always be behind Munster rugby. Let us keep this special sacred thing
                  that Munster rugby has. Surely the whole rugby world must be looking on
                  with envy at the Munster rugby team and the support that they have.

                  Alan Gaffney and company ... we will never forget the Miracle Match in
                  Munster!

                  Ends
                  Frame it and put it on the wall in the supporters club jacks... There will be a queue just to read it and if they don't come away "excited" then something ain't working!!
                  Mumha Abu

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I was on the south terrace right behind the wheelchair section. I told my son to forget running onto the pitch at the end as we were probably on a hiding to nothing. Then...Then....when the final whistle blew...I realised I had already cleared the barriers and my legs were carrying me faster than I thought possible half way thro the 22 and onwards. It was entirely involuntary but I went along for the ride, with the young fella shouting at me to slow down.we went totally mental! When I regained my senses I told him to calm the fuk down, ridiculous carry-on! It was almost an hour after the final whistle when we started to leave, just didn't want it to end. Pure Magic.
                    Mumha Abu

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by deltared View Post
                      I was on the south terrace right behind the wheelchair section. I told my son to forget running onto the pitch at the end as we were probably on a hiding to nothing. Then...Then....when the final whistle blew...I realised I had already cleared the barriers and my legs were carrying me faster than I thought possible half way thro the 22 and onwards. It was entirely involuntary but I went along for the ride, with the young fella shouting at me to slow down.we went totally mental! When I regained my senses I told him to calm the fuk down, ridiculous carry-on! It was almost an hour after the final whistle when we started to leave, just didn't want it to end. Pure Magic.
                      Do you remember what song was played after the final whistle? There'd be an international incident if it happened now! I'll be eternally grateful to the random Cork man who showed up outside the ground with a spare ticket about 15 mins before kick off. I'd been there for a few hours in hope at that stage. The whole terrace seemed to dance when the conversion went over (and I and everyone around me was convinced that we didn't need the kick). It was mayhem. One of the happiest days of my life. We were innocent then .

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Great times. Funnily found that win as satisfying as the HEC wins..Great atmosphere though was plastered. Hadnt arranged to stay down. Slept in the car. Woke up..wont say any more. Miss those days
                        \"If you can dream it, you can do it\".
                        \"To the cowardly and unfaithful, nothing is possible\"

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Jollygreengiant View Post
                          Great times. Funnily found that win as satisfying as the HEC wins..Great atmosphere though was plastered. Hadnt arranged to stay down. Slept in the car. Woke up..wont say any more. Miss those days
                          The HEC wins were like the wedding, the miracle match was like the stag!

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Was sitting up at the back of the old stand for the game, still don't know how I got onto the pitch so quickly at the end, to be out in the middle with Donnacha & Jim Williams jumping up and down.

                            Have it captured on video as well to look back on with delight in the many years ahead - we might not get a repeat but any supporter going out there tomorrow owes it to the history of the jersey to roar themselves hoarse and help the lads when they need it most.

                            Comment

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