Martina Connolly asked her partner of 22 years to marry her at half-time during the Ireland-Czech Republic game at the Aviva Stadium.Irish Independent

A Dublin woman availed of an ancient Irish tradition and proposed to her boyfriend on February 29th – in front of 37,700 fans at an Ireland football match.

Martina Connolly asked her partner of 22 years to marry her at half-time during the Ireland-Czech Republic game at the Aviva Stadium.

Surprised supporters cheered loudly as Martina got down on one knee to propose to the father of her two children.

Derek McGill (42) received a huge cheer when he said ‘yes’ to the 38-year-old special needs assistant.

“I’ve been thinking about it for the past year,” said Connolly as she availed of the ancient Irish tradition in which it is acceptable for a woman to propose on February 29.

“We did sit down and have a chat about it before but we put it off, mainly due to finances,” added Connolly whose children are 20 and 11.

“Maybe he needs a kick up the bum, so this is the kick. I thought he was going to kill me.”
Connolly and McGill celebrated by watching the rest of the game which Ireland drew 1-1.

“I’m lost for words,” said McGill after Martina enlisted the help of Dublin’s 98FM radio station to enact her proposal.

Meanwhile Niamh Murphy (21) also proposed to her boyfriend, Declan Gardiner, (41), in  Wexford yesterday.

"Well you always said if you won the Lotto would you marry me, so now I'm asking?" she asked He replied  "Ah sure, go on then."

Their exchange was heard live on radio where a competition to ask boyfriends to marry was sponsored.

Meanwhile in Louth, Teacher Maeve Jordan (26), from Co Louth, got her boyfriend to say yes.
"I'm sick of waiting for him to ask me," she said.