The nominees for the annual Magners Ulster Rugby Awards Ceremony, which this year will be held on Thursday, May 14 at the Ramada Hotel in Belfast, were announced today.
The Magners Ulster Rugby Awards Ceremony, which is one of the biggest events in the sporting calendar, celebrates the achievements and development of rugby at all levels, and brings together the cream of the crop in Ulster.
From schools, youth, club and professional levels, the awards recognise the role that they all play for the development of the game.
Speaking about Magners’ first year as the title sponsor of the annual Ulster Rugby Awards, Gavan Morris, Marketing Manager, Magners Irish Cider, said: “One of the great opportunities afforded by the new contract with Ulster Rugby is the sponsorship of their Annual Rugby Awards Dinner.
“We are delighted to be involved with an event which is regarded as the highlight of the rugby season and to be part of acknowledging the work of key rugby officials and players.
“This latest investment in Ulster Rugby not only reflects our commitment to rugby at grassroots and representative levels, but the awards dinner provides us with a platform to say well done to all those who contribute to the overall success of Ulster Rugby both at an amateur and professional level.”
While the top accolade of Magners’ Ulster Rugby Personality of the Year will remain a closely guarded secret until the night, the nominees for the other awards represent clubs from right across the province, and are as follows:
CALOR GAS YOUTH PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Stephen Irvine (Banbridge RFC), Dominic Gallagher (Lisburn RFC), Chris McDonald (City of Derry RFC)
NORTHERN BANK LTD SCHOOLS PLAYER OF THE YEAR: James McKinney (Campbell College), Steven Lecky (Methodist College), Niall Annett (Methodist College)
KUKRI CLUB OF THE YEAR: Ballynahinch RFC, City of Derry RFC, Bangor RFC, Grosvenor RFC
CITY OF DERRY/KEN GOODALL AWARD CLUB PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Sam McKinney (Ballymena RFC), Mark Robinson (Queen’s University RFC), Chris Stevenson (Ballynahinch RFC), Ian Caldwell (Ballymena RFC)
PERENNIALS DORRINGTON B. FAULKNER, “UNSUNG HERO” AWARD: Barry Leacock (Malone RFC), Alan Egner (Grosvenor RFC), William Davidson (Armagh RFC), WG Boles (Dungannon RFC)
BANK OF IRELAND ULSTER PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Rory Best (Ulster Rugby & Belfast Harlequins), Stephen Ferris (Ulster Rugby & Dungannon RFC), Ed O’Donoghue (Ulster Rugby & Instonians RFC), Simon Danielli (Ulster Rugby & Malone RFC)
PHOENIX ACADEMY PLAYER: Ian Whitten (Ballymena RFC), Willie Faloon (Ballynahinch RFC), Ian Porter (Queen’s University RFC)
VODAFONE YOUNG ULSTER PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Darren Cave (Ulster Rugby & Belfast Harlequins), Ian Whitten (Ulster Rugby & Ballymena RFC), David Pollock (Ulster Rugby & Dungannon)
MAGNERS ULSTER RUGBY PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR: To be announced on May 14