5 Dec, 14:49
The Ireland Under-19 squad to face Australia Schools at Ravenhill on Saturday week (December 14) has been announced.
In the running to land the much sought after Bord Gáis Energy IRUPA Players' Player of the Year award are Munster's Keith Earls and Leinster duo Sean O'Brien and Isa Nacewa.
Ireland captain Brian O'Driscoll, who is acting Chairman of IRUPA, said: "Winning an IRUPA award, which is voted for by the players who you play with and against, is the best mark of respect for any rugby player.
"These awards celebrate not only those players, but also raise much needed monies for the IRUPA Injured Players Fund."
Among the six other awards is the IRUPA Nature Valley Young Player of the Year award, contested this year by a feast of talented players including Munster scrum half Conor Murray, Rhys Ruddock from Leinster and Ulster's up-and-coming centre Nevin Spence.
John Mullins, the CEO of Bord Gáis, said: "This is the third year of our sponsorship of the Bord Gáis Energy IRUPA Awards and we're really delighted to be involved again in what is the gala rugby event of the year.
"To be nominated and voted for by your peers and fellow players is a huge honour and recognition.
"IRUPA do a fantastic amount of work behind the scenes of Irish rugby and the support they receive from their members is testament to this and an acknowledgement of the importance of initiatives like the IRUPA Injured Players Fund."
Rugby fans across Ireland can vote for the 2011 Supporters' Player of the Year on Newstalk 106-108FM.
Tune in to Newstalk from Monday, April 25 to vote, and to be in with a chance to win a year's supply of electricity from Bord Gáis Energy and also attend the event at the Burlington Hotel on May 4.
A new award this year is the O2 Rugby Moment of the Year which singles out defining moments from the rugby season and will be voted for by the public via O2's Facebook page, www.facebook/bethedifference.
2011 BORD GÁIS ENERGY IRUPA AWARDS:
PLAYERS' PLAYER OF THE YEAR -
Keith Earls (Munster)
Isa Nacewa (Leinster)
Sean O'Brien (Leinster)
UNSUNG HERO OF THE YEAR -
Willie Faloon (Ulster)
Wian du Preez (Munster)
Richard Strauss (Leinster)
YOUNG PLAYER OF THE YEAR -
Conor Murray (Munster)
Nevin Spence (Ulster)
Rhys Ruddock (Leinster)
TRY OF YEAR -
Fionn Carr (Connacht v Scarlets, Magners League)
Craig Gilroy (Ulster v Cardiff Blues, Magners League)
Isa Nacewa (Leinster v Leicester Tigers, Heineken Cup)
HALL OF FAME -
Recipient will be announced on Wednesday, April 27
RUGBY MOMENT OF THE YEAR -
Announced at the IRUPA Awards on Wednesday, May 4
SUPPORTERS' PLAYER OF THE YEAR -
The Supporters' Player of the Year, as voted by listeners of Newstalk 106-108FM, will be announced at the IRUPA Awards on Wednesday, May 4
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