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Kearney And Leinster Among RTE Award Nominees

Kearney And Leinster Among RTE Award Nominees

Rob Kearney, Leinster and the province’s head coach Joe Schmidt have been nominated for honours at the 2012 RTE Sports Awards which will be held later this month.

The RTÉ Sports Person of the Year, Sports Team of the Year and Manager of the Year will be revealed and presented with their awards at a special ceremony in association with the Irish Sports Council.

Hosted by Darragh Maloney and broadcast live on RTÉ One at 9.30pm on Sunday, December 23, the live show will review what was a momentous year for Irish athletes and teams, and look back on the dramatic and memorable sporting moments of 2012.

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Ronan O’Gara (2004) and Brian O’Driscoll (2009) were previous rugby winners of the national broadcaster’s top sporting accolade. Golfer Rory McIlroy was the 2011 RTÉ Sports Person of the Year.

Leinster, having recaptured the Heineken Cup in May 2011, were last year’s Team of the Year winners. There were four previous rugby wins in the Team of the Year category – Ireland in both 2004 and 2009, and Munster were honoured in 2006 and 2008.

Leinster head coach Joe Schmidt was also nominated for the Manager of the Year gong twelve months ago when Republic of Ireland soccer manager Giovanni Trapattoni was chosen as the inaugural winner.

The 2012 awards ceremony will again see the RTÉ/Irish Sports Council’s Hall of Fame award presented to a very special Irish sporting legend.

RTÉ Sports Person of the Year Nominees:

Fionnuala Britton – European Cross Country gold medallist
Rory McIlroy – World number one golfer and USPGA champion
Mark Rohan – Handcycling Paralympic double gold medalist
Karl Lacey – Donegal’s All-Ireland winning centre-back and GAA/GPA Footballer of the Year
Rob Kearney – Heineken Cup winner, ERC European Player of the Year and Guinness Rugby Writers Player of the Year
Katie Taylor – Olympic gold medal winner and world boxing champion 
Jason Smyth – Double gold medal-winning Paralympic athlete and world record holder in the 100m and 200m
Henry Shefflin – All-Ireland winner and GAA/GPA Hurler of the Year 
Michael McKillop – Double gold medal-winning Paralympian in the 800m and 1500m
Joseph O’Brien – Champion jockey and winner of the Irish Derby, Epsom Derby, 2000 Guineas, Coronation Cup, Prince of Wales’s Stakes, Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, Racing Post Trophy and Grand Prix de Paris

The winner of the RTÉ Sports Person of the Year award will be selected by a panel of RTÉ Sport journalists and editorial staff.

RTÉ Sports Team of the Year Nominees:

Leinster – Three-time Heineken Cup winners
Donegal – All-Ireland and Ulster football champions
Cork – All-Ireland Ladies football champions for six out of the last seven years
Irish Paralympic team – Recorded a 16-medal haul at London 2012
Sligo Rovers – Winners of the Airtricity League Premier Division title for the first time in 35 years 
Kilkenny – Back-to-back All-Ireland hurling champions
Wexford – Three-in-a-row All-Ireland camogie champions
Irish Boxing team – Claimed four medals at the London Olympics 
Irish Women’s Cross Country team – Gold medallists at the European Championships in Budapest

The winners of the RTÉ Sports Team of the Year award will be selected by the public via phone and text vote on the night. Details will be announced live on the programme on December 23.

RTÉ Sports Manager of the Year Nominees:

Brian Cody – Kilkenny’s All-Ireland hurling title-winning manager 
JJ Doyle – Wexford’s All-Ireland camogie title-winning manager
Billy Walsh – Head coach with the IABA High Performance Unit
Mick Cooke – Drogheda United manager whose side won the EA Sports Cup and qualified for the Europa League 
Joe Schmidt – Leinster’s Heineken Cup-winning head coach 
Jim McGuinness – Donegal football manager who bridged a 20-year gap in bringing Sam Maguire back to the north west
Eamonn Ryan – Manager of the Cork ladies football squad who again in 2012 claimed All-Ireland honours

The winner of the RTÉ Sport Manager of the Year will be selected by a panel of representatives from 18 national media outlets.