The glorious new Bizkaia Fronton in the Bilbao suburb of Miribilla. It seats 3000 and is a true cathedral of the sport.
The fans began to gather, with many Riojans arriving by coach from the home villages of the finalists.
The fronton was almost empty when the press were allowed entry, save only for the players warming up for the curtain rasier.
Bizkaia is vast
The television crew set up
Merino’s home village must have been empty on Sunday
In the first match, Idoate and Pascual beat Berasaluze VIII and Apraiz
The finalists warm up in front of a now massive crowd
Joxan Tolosa and Xabier Euzkitze discuss live on ETB
Aitor Zubieta, botillero for Xala and Laskurain, is interviewed
Joy and relief
Everybody wanted a piece of David Merino and he was happy to oblige
Merino’s brother, Miguel, admires the silverware
Xala and Laskurain, defeated
Titin, history maker
Merino can scarcely believe what he has achieved
He took the time to pose for me!
All photos are mine