To cap off another fantastic year in the Ulster Bank League, a cross section of Irish club rugby gathered in Dublin tonight for the fourth annual Ulster Bank League Awards..
Ireland head coach Joe Schmidt was on hand at the home of Irish Rugby, the Aviva Stadium, to present the awards across all divisions of the Ulster Bank League.
Clontarf bagged three of the 14 awards available on the night with Joey Carbery, the former Ireland Under-20 international, named as the Division 1A Rising Star of the Year. The talented Leinster Academy youngster has had a season to remember for the Bulls, which included a man-of-the-match performance in Clontarf’s win over Cork Constitution in the Ulster Bank League final.
‘Tarf’s impressive year has finished on a high as their head coach Andy Wood, who was previously nominated in this category, claimed the Division 1A Coach of the Year award, while winger Mick McGrath came top of the leader-board to become Division 1A’s Top Try Scorer again, something he also achieved in 2013 and 2014.
Meanwhile, Cork Constitution lock Conor Kindregan beat McGrath and Young Munster’s Ger Slattery to be named Division 1A Player of the Year, and Scott Deasy of Lansdowne finished the regular season with the most points to become Division 1A Top Points Scorer.
The Munster contingent was strong across the remaining divisions with Charlie O’Regan of UCC winning the Division 2A Player of the Year award, Paddy O’Toole of Highfield acknowledged as the Division 2B Player of the Year Award’ and Brendan Guilfoyle of Old Crescent named the Division 2C Player of the Year. This year’s PRO of the Year award went to the Banbridge duo of Robin McGloughlin and Marc Eadie.
The Ulster Bank League Award winners and nominees were selected by a panel of judges – Adam Redmond, Donn O’Sullivan, Richard Mulligan and Nicky Comyn. Provincial winners were decided by a public vote. The winners were as follows:
1. Ulster Bank Player of the Year – Division 1A: Conor Kindregan, Cork Constitution
2. Ulster Bank Top Try Scorer – Division 1A: Mick McGrath, Clontarf
3. Ulster Bank Top Points Scorer – Division 1A: Scott Deasy, Lansdowne
4. Ulster Bank Rising Star of the Year – Division 1A: Joey Carbery, Clontarf
5. Ulster Bank Coach of the Year – Division 1A: Andy Wood, Clontarf
6. Ulster Bank Player of the Year – Division 1B: Angus Lloyd, Dublin University
7. Ulster Bank Player of the Year – Division 2A: Charlie O’Regan, UCC
8. Ulster Bank Player of the Year – Division 2B: Paddy O’Toole, Highfield
9. Ulster Bank Player of the Year – Division 2C: Brendan Guilfoyle, Old Cresent
10. Ulster Bank Club PRO (Public Relations Officer) of the Year: Robin McGloughlin & Marc Eadie, Banbridge
11. Ulster Bank Provincial Players of the Year – voted by the public through Ulster Bank Rugby Social Media
– Connacht Player of the Year: Stephen Kerins, Sligo
– Leinster Player of the Year: Bryan McKeever, Navan
– Munster Player of the Year: Sean Duggan, Young Munster
– Ulster Player of the Year: Aaron Cairns, Ballynahinch
Speaking at the Ulster Bank League Awards, Maeve McMahon, Director of Customer Experience and Products, Ulster Bank, said: “This is one of the highlights of the year for us, bringing together some of Ireland’s most talented club rugby players and rewarding them for their dedication and commitment to the game.
“The Ulster Bank League is brimming with talent and you can see that throughout the country every weekend as these players take to the pitch. Ulster Bank is proud to sponsor club rugby in Ireland and as we remain title sponsors to the All-Ireland League until 2018 as well as Official Community Rugby Partner to the IRFU, we look forward to continuing our support of grassroots rugby.”
For more information on the Ulster Bank League Awards, go to www.facebook.com/ulsterbankrugby or find Ulster Bank Rugby on Twitter.