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Departing Duo Receive Ulster Rugby Awards

Departing Duo Receive Ulster Rugby Awards

Ruan Pienaar was crowned the Heineken Personality of the Year at Ulster Rugby’s annual Awards Dinner, which was held at Aquinas Grammar School on Saturday evening.

Ruan Pienaar, who will leave the province after next month’s game against the Barbarians, was among 16 winners at the event which celebrates rugby at all levels across Ulster.

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The hugely popular South African was acknowledged for his contribution to Ulster Rugby – both on and off the field – over the past seven years. During that stint, his performances, commitment and pride in the jersey have made him a true favourite among team-mates, coaches, staff and supporters.

Unsurprisingly, Pienaar also won the Ulster Rugby Supporters Club Player of the Year. Charles Piutau picked up the Bank of Ireland Player of the Year award, while Jacob Stockdale was announced as the BT Young Player of the Year.

Roger Wilson, who will also move on from Kingspan Stadium next month, received a special award for finishing his Ulster career as the province’s most-capped player, having made 221 appearances.

In addition, four players were presented with honours caps for reaching appearance milestones with Ulster in the past 12 months – Luke Marshall (100), Rob Herring (100), Tommy Bowe (150) and Chris Henry (150).


Hughes Insurance Academy Player of the Year

Ross Kane
Nominated: Robert Lyttle, Jonny Stewart

SONI Community Rugby Champion Awards

John Curry (Randalstown RFC), Gary McFarlane (Larne RFC)
Nominated: Susan Spence (City of Derry RFC), Richard Black (City of Armagh RFC)

Referee of the Year

Jonny Erskine

The Errigle Inn Women’s Player of the Year

Ilse van Staden (Cooke RFC)
Nominated: Lauren Maginnis (Cooke RFC), Claire McLaughlin (Cooke RFC)

Ulster Under-18 Girls Player of the Year

Neve Jones (Malone RFC)
Nominated: Claire Boles (Enniskillen RFC), Vicky Irwin (Ballynahinch RFC)

Ulster Carpets Youth Player of the Year

Jack McIntosh (Rainey Old Boys RFC)
Nominated: Evin Crummie (City of Armagh RFC), Michael O’Neill (Rainey Old Boys RFC)

Danske Bank Schools Player of the Year

Michael Lowry (RBAI)
Nominated: James Hume (RBAI), Stewart Moore (Ballymena Academy)

Dorrington B Faulkner Award (sponsored by Perennials RFC)

Dr. Johnnie Neary

Ken Goodall Outstanding Club Player of the Year

Tommy O’Hagan (Rainey Old Boys RFC)
Nominated: Joe Dunleavy (City of Derry RFC), John McCusker (Rainey Old Boys RFC)

Kukri Sports Club of the Year

Ballynahinch RFC
Nominated: City of Armagh RFC, Malone RFC, Omagh RFC, Virginia RFC

Ulster Rugby Supporters Club Player of the Year

Ruan Pienaar
Nominated: Sean Reidy, Charles Piutau

Rugby Writers’ Player of the Year

Sean Reidy
Nominated: Charles Piutau, Jacob Stockdale

BT Young Player of the Year

Jacob Stockdale
Nominated: Tommy O’Hagan, Kieran Treadwell

Bank of Ireland Ulster Player of the Year

Charles Piutau
Nominated: Paddy Jackson, Sean Reidy

Heineken Ulster Rugby Personality of the Year

Ruan Pienaar