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Munster Announce Player Of the Year Nominees

Munster Announce Player Of the Year Nominees

The 2017 Munster Rugby Awards, in association with the Irish Independent, will take place on Thursday, May 4 at the Maryborough Hotel in Cork, and the nominations for the Senior Player and Academy Player of the Year awards have now been finalised

The Munster Rugby Senior Player of the Year nominees are Tyler Bleyendaal, John Ryan and Niall Scannell, all of whom were nominated by their fellow team-mates.

All three are nominated for the first time and previous winners of the prestigious accolade include James Coughlan, John Hayes, Mick O’Driscoll, Ronan O’Gara, Donnacha Ryan, Tommy O’Donnell, Conor Murray and two-time recipient CJ Stander.

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Once again the overall winner will be decided by a public vote. Click here to vote via the Irish Independent website and be in with a chance to win two tickets to next week’s prestigious awards ceremony.

Greencore Munster Rugby Academy players Dan Goggin, Conor Oliver and Brian Scott have been nominated for the John McCarthy award for Academy Player of the Year.

In total, eleven diverse categories will be honoured in celebrating the best of domestic and professional rugby within the province.


Tyler Bleyendaal

The New Zealand-born out-half has firmly announced himself as one of Europe’s top number 10s this season. With a cool temperament and great time on the ball, the 26-year-old was instrumental in Munster making this season’s Champions Cup and PRO12 semi-finals. Off the tee and out of hand, Bleyendaal’s kicking and control has been close to exemplary while his ability to marshal backs and forwards around the field has facilitated excellent team performances from the men in red. Captaining Munster in four of 23 appearances this season, and with four man-of-the-match awards, the play-maker is one of the forerunners for the PRO12 Golden Boot award and was one of three Munster players nominated for the EPCR European Player of the Year honour alongside Conor Murray and CJ Stander.

John Ryan

Increasing his involvement with every season, the Cork native has made the number 3 jersey very much his own across 2016/17, starting no less than 20 of his 22 matches to date. At 119kg and also capable of covering loosehead, Munster’s impressive scrum this season is due in no small part to the work of Ryan, while his work-rate and bruising tackle count around the park was best illustrated in Munster’s Champions Cup quarter-final win over Toulouse where he scored the first try and picked up the man-of-the-match accolade, his second of the season. The 28-year-old’s achievements at provincial level led to an Ireland call-up, winning his first cap against Canada in November before featuring in every game of the 2017 RBS 6 Nations.

Niall Scannell

Another key component of the Munster pack and set piece, the hooker has gone from 10 starts last season to 20 for the season to date with a further three appearances off the bench, and he won his 50th cap against Toulouse at the beginning of the month. A former Ireland Under-20 captain and a leading voice among the tight five, Scannell’s accuracy in the lineout has helped make Munster’s maul a potent weapon off of which he himself has touched down for four tries, including one against the Maori All Blacks in November. Solid at scrum time, mobile and abrasive in open play, the 25-year-old was another player rewarded with his first international cap this season, starting Ireland’s RBS 6 Nations win over Italy and also featuring against France, Wales and England.

Event Package –

Cost: €;65 per person/€;650 per table of 10
Pre-event drinks reception sponsored by Diageo.
Three-course meal in the Maryborough Hotel, Cork.

There will also be a raffle of Munster Rugby prizes on the day with all proceeds going to the Alzheimer Society of Ireland and Diabetes Ireland.

To book a place at this year’s Munster Rugby Awards, please contact Anthony Morrissey, Munster Rugby Business Development Manager (Tel: 0876202530; Email: anthonymorrissey@munsterrugby.ie).