Composite rules shinty–hurling

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Composite rules shinty–hurling
Highest governing body
First played19th century
Team members14 or 15 (depends on their rules)
Mixed gender Yes, though women's form known as shinty/camogie
Type Hybrid sport, team sport
Country or regionWorldwide

Composite rules shinty–hurling (Irish : Rialacha chomhréiteach sinteag-iomáint)—sometimes known simply as shinty–hurling—is a hybrid sport which was developed to facilitate international matches between shinty players and hurling players.

Irish language Goidelic language spoken in Ireland and by Irish people

Irish is a Goidelic language of the Celtic and Indo-European language family, originating in Ireland and historically spoken by the Irish people. Irish is spoken as a first language in substantial areas of counties Galway, Kerry, Cork and Donegal, smaller areas of Waterford, Mayo and Meath, and a few other locations, and as a second language by a larger group of non-habitual speakers across the country.

Shinty Team game with ball and sticks

Shinty is a team game played with sticks and a ball. Shinty is now played mainly in the Scottish Highlands, and amongst Highland migrants to the big cities of Scotland, but it was formerly more widespread in Scotland, and was even played for a considerable time in northern England and other areas in the world where Scottish Highlanders migrated.

Hurling outdoor team game

Hurling is an outdoor team game of ancient Gaelic and Irish origin. It is administered by the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA). The game has prehistoric origins, and has been played for 4,000 years. One of Ireland's native Gaelic games, it shares a number of features with Gaelic football, such as the field and goals, the number of players, and much terminology. There is a similar game for women called camogie. It shares a common Gaelic root with the sport of shinty, which is played predominantly in Scotland.


Shinty–hurling is one of few team sports in the world without any dedicated clubs or leagues. It is currently played by both men's and women's teams only in tournaments or once-off internationals. The women's form of the game is called shinty/camogie.

Team sport

A team sport includes any sport where individuals are organized into opposing teams which compete to win. Team members act together towards a shared objective. This can be done in a number of ways such as outscoring the opposing team. Team members set goals, make decisions, communicate, manage conflict, and solve problems in a supportive, trusting atmosphere in order to accomplish their objectives. Examples are basketball, volleyball, rugby, water polo, handball, lacrosse, cricket, baseball, wrestling and the various forms of football and hockey.

Scotland are the leading team in the sport, having won seventeen of many international series against Ireland to date.

Scotland national shinty team

The Scotland national shinty team is the team selected to represent Scotland and the sport of shinty in the annual composite rules Shinty/Hurling International Series against the Ireland national hurling team. The team is selected by the Camanachd Association.

Ireland national hurling team

The Ireland national hurling team, consisting solely of hurlers, is a representative team for Ireland in the sport of composite rules shinty–hurling.


The rules of the composite sport are designed to allow for neither side to gain an advantage, eliminating or imposing certain restrictions. The goals are those used in hurling, with 3 points for a goal (in the net under the crossbar) and 1 point for a shot over the crossbar. A stationary ball taken straight from the ground and shot over the crossbar scores 2 points. For the 2012 International Series, a goal became worth 5 points in an effort to increase the number of goals. This rule was abandoned for the 2013 series, in favour of the traditional model of 3 points for a goal.

Players may not catch the ball unless they are the goalkeeper (or a defender on the line for a penalty) and this must be released within three steps. Players may not kick the ball, but can drag the ball with their foot.

Although there is a statutory size for the ball to be used in the games, there is often a custom of using a sliotar in one half and a shinty ball in the other. Each half lasts 35 minutes.


A sliotar or sliothar is a hard solid sphere slightly larger than a tennis ball, consisting of a cork core covered by two pieces of leather stitched together. Sometimes called a "dust" or "hurling ball", it resembles a baseball with more pronounced stitching. It is used in the Gaelic games of hurling, camogie and rounders.


The first games played were challenge matches between London Camanachd and London GAA in 1896 and Glasgow Cowal and Dublin Celtic in 1897 and 1898, with the first game played at Celtic Park. [1] However, there was then a hiatus until Scottish representative teams and Irish sides took place in the 1920s. Following intermittent international games between Scotland and an all-Ireland team before the Second World War, controversy arose as the British Government put pressure upon the Camanachd Association to cease from co-operating with the Gaelic Athletic Association, disapproving of their perceived anti-British viewpoint [2] [3]

London Camanachd

London Camanachd is a shinty club in England. They have historically been attached to the South District. They went into abeyance in 1992 but were reconstituted in 2005. They played the first officially recognised Shinty match outside Scotland in 80 years on Saturday 22 July 2006 against the Highlanders.

London GAA

The London County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) or London GAA is one of the county boards outside Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in London. The county board is also responsible for the London inter-county teams.

Celtic Park football stadium in Glasgow

Celtic Park in the Parkhead area of Glasgow, Scotland, is the home ground of Celtic Football Club. With a capacity of 60,411, it is the largest football stadium in Scotland, and the eighth-largest stadium in the United Kingdom. It is known by Celtic fans as Parkhead or Paradise.

However, universities in both countries kept the link going after the war and this led to a resumption of international fixtures between the two codes in the 1970s.

After a long run of Irish successes, Scotland won four fixtures in a row from 2005 until Ireland reclaimed the title in 2009. Scotland's successes have been marred by a lack of interest from an Irish perspective. Unlike the international rules football tests between Australia and Ireland, few players from the top flight counties participate in the event—though in recent times this trend has bucked and more higher ranked Irish players have represented their nation.

International rules football Hybrid team sport between Australian rules and Gaelic football

International rules football is a team sport consisting of a hybrid of football codes, which was developed to facilitate international representative matches between Australian rules football players and Gaelic football players.

2007 also saw the use of compromise rules as a way of developing the Gaelic languages in Ireland and Scotland by the Columba Initiative. A team called Alba, made up of Scottish Gaelic speakers, played Míchael Breathnach CLG, from Inverin, Galway. The project was repeated in 2008. [4] The Gaelic speakers international was played for a third time in 2010 in Portree in the Isle of Skye on 13 February 2010.

There are also Scottish/Irish women's and under-21s sides which have competed against one another.

In 2009, the first full shinty/hurling match in the United States took place between Skye Camanachd and the San Francisco Rovers.

In 2010, the fixture was played at Croke Park before the international rules football game and then a return leg was played at the Bught Park two weeks later.

On 28 April 2012 the inaugural match between the teams of Irish Defence Forces and the British Army was played at Bught Park in aid of PoppyScotland. [5]

International series

An international series for men, women and under 21s is played annually, with test matches rotating between venues in Scotland and Ireland. Ireland are the leading team in the series, having won 9 of 16 senior men's test matches. Camogie-Shinty is the women's version of the game.

See also

Related Research Articles

Camogie Irish stick-and-ball team sport played by women

Camogie is an Irish stick-and-ball team sport played by women; it is almost identical to the game of hurling played by men. Camogie is played by 100,000 women in Ireland and worldwide, largely among Irish communities. It is organised by the Dublin-based Camogie Association or An Cumann Camógaíochta. UNESCO lists Camogie as an element of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Camanachd Association organization

The Camanachd Association is the world governing body of the Scottish sport of shinty. The body is based in Inverness, Highland, and is in charge of the rules of the game. Its main competitions are the Tulloch Homes Camanachd Cup and the Mowi Premiership and the Mowi Valerie Fraser Camanachd Cup.

Glenurquhart Shinty Club

Glenurquhart Shinty Club is a shinty team which plays in Drumnadrochit on the banks of Loch Ness, Scotland. It draws its players from the part of the Great Glen which encompasses Drumnadrochit, Lewiston and Glenurquhart. The club has been existence since 1885. They won their first senior trophy, the MacAulay Cup in 2012. After 2013 and 2014 saw them lose two successive MacTavish Cups, they are currently the holders as of 2015.

Shinty in the United States

Shinty was played in its original form throughout North and South America by Scottish settlers until the early 1900s when the practice died out. Shinty, and its close Irish relative hurling as well as the English bandy, are recognised as being the progenitors of ice hockey and are an important part of North America's modern sporting heritage.

Inverness Shinty Club

Inverness Shinty Club is a shinty club from Inverness, Scotland. The first team competes in North Division One and the second team in North Division Three. Founded in 1887 as Inverness Town and County Shinty Club to distinguish from other clubs in Inverness such as Clachnacuddin, Inverness moved to the Bught Park in 1934. Inverness won the Camanachd Cup in 1952. The club struggles to compete for players with the wide proliferation of football clubs in Inverness, in particular Inverness Caledonian Thistle but still manages to put out two teams.

Lewis Camanachd

Lewis Camanachd a.k.a. Comann Camanachd Leòdhais in Scots Gaelic, is the senior shinty team from the Isle of Lewis, Scotland. The club entered North Division Three for the first time in 2011. This was the first time a team from the Western Isles was allowed to compete in league shinty. However, the club was only allowed in on trial and awaited a decision from the Camanachd Association as to whether this was to become a permanent arrangement, after an "epochal" decision, Lewis was granted entry on a permanent basis from 2012.

The following is an alphabetical list of terms and jargon used in relation to Gaelic games. See also list of Irish county nicknames

Bught Park

Bught Park is the largest park in the city of Inverness, Scotland, and is situated on the western bank of the River Ness. It is home to the Inverness Highland Games and a small scale outdoor music festival. It is located next to the city's sports centre, swimming pool and BMX track. The Bught Park is also the name for the sports stadium situated within the confines of the park which regularly hosts both the Camanachd Cup Final and the Composite Rules Shinty/Hurling Internationals and is considered one of the finest parks in shinty. It is also home to Inverness Shinty Club who have played there since the 1920s. The park is situated on land that was formerly the Bught House estate. An 18th century stately home on the site was demolished for the creation of the Ice Centre in the 1960s.

Gary Innes Scottish musician and shinty player

Gary Innes is a Scottish musician, a former shinty player and a broadcaster from Spean Bridge, Lochaber, Scotland.

Hybrid sport

A hybrid sport is one which combines two or more sports in order to create a new sport, or to allow meaningful competition between players of those sports.

Tír Conaill Harps

Tír Conaill Harps Gaelic Athletics Club (GAC), is a Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) Club based in Glasgow, Scotland. The club plays Gaelic Football, Ladies' Gaelic Football as well as Camogie and Women's Shinty. The club is the biggest GAA club in Scotland in terms of structure and has a fully integrated youth system fielding teams for all age groups. The club's colours are green and gold.

Mod Cup

The Mod Cup is a trophy in the sport of shinty first competed for in 1969, traditionally played for by the two teams who are based closest to the host venue of the Royal National Mod. The current holders are Oban Camanachd.

Glasgow Cowal Shinty Club was a shinty club, founded in 1876 and now defunct, which was one of the founding members of the Camanachd Association. It was one of the most illustrious names in the sports history before folding in the 1920s. It played at various locations in Glasgow including Glasgow Green and was involved in some of the most important fixtures in shinty history.

Alba is a shinty team selected to represent Scotland and Scots Gaelic which plays annually in a composite rules international series with Míchael Breathnach CLG who represent the Irish Language. The prerequisite for playing in this team is that a player can speak Scots Gaelic.

The Shinty/Hurling International Series is a sports competition played annually between the Ireland national hurling team and Scotland national shinty team. The series is conducted according to the rules of Shinty/Hurling, which is a hybrid sport consisting of a mixture of rules from the Scottish sport of Shinty and the Irish sport of Hurling.

Shinty is a very small minority sport in Russia, played primarily in Krasnodar but with some enthusiasts in Moscow.

Scoring in Gaelic games

This page discusses scoring in the Gaelic games of hurling, Gaelic football, camogie, ladies' Gaelic football, international rules football and shinty-hurling.


  1. "The first combined shinty/hurling match 1897". BBC.
  2. MacKenzie, Fraser (8 October 2000). "Celtic festival sees codes come together". The Sunday Herald.
  3. "Hurling himself into the battle". Scotland on Sunday.
  4. "Gaelic team to represent Scotland in Galway". Camanachd Association. Retrieved 8 October 2008.
  5. "Irish and British forces in historic sports meeting". The Scotsman.