Tipperary sports stars of the year chosen for Annerville Awards

Eamonn Wynne

Reporter:

Eamonn Wynne

Email:

ewynne@nationalist.ie

Brian Fox

Tipperary football captain Brian Fox has been selected for an Annerville Award by the Tipperary United Sports Panel.

Tipperary hurling captain Padraic Maher and Tipperary football captain Brian Fox head a list of sports stars who have been honoured with their selection for Annerville awards.

Stars in twenty one categories have been chosen by members of the Tipperary United Sports Panel, who each year present the Tipperary amateur sports stars of the year with the Annerville awards, which are sponsored by Bulmers.

They include the Knocknagow Award, which is presented to a Sportsperson of the Past. 

This year's recipient is Donie Nealon, from the Burgess club, who as a player during a halcyon era for the county's hurlers won five All-Ireland medals, eight Munster medals and six National Hurling Leagues.

As a player and selector he was involved in all eight of the county's All-Ireland-winning teams from 1958 to 1991, serving as a selector in 1971, 1989 and 1991.

Padraic Maher is rewarded for a year in which he led Tipperary to the All-Ireland semi-final and also captained Thurles Sarsfields to their fourth County Senior Championship in-a-row.

His performances for club and county during 2017 were of a consistently high standard, as were those of Tipperary football captain Brian Fox, who helped the county maintain the recent upturn in its fortunes by securing promotion to Division Two of the National League.

In soccer Clonmel Celtic's David Joyce (pictured above), now an established member of the Irish amateur side, was on the team that came through the qualifiers to reach the UEFA Regions Cup Final in Istanbul.

Amee Leigh Murphy Crowe was the highest try scorer as Ireland's Sevens Rugby team qualified for the World Cup Sevens series in the United States next year. For the second year in-a-row, the young Tipperary town woman was voted the Irish Women's Player of the Year. 

Cahir's Aisling McCarthy, a star of Tipperary's All-Ireland-winning Intermediate team, will receive the Ladies Football award while referee Fergal Horgan, who took charge of his first All-Ireland Senior Final, has got the nod for the Sean Lyons Sports Executive Award.

Among his many successes during the year Clonmel athlete Sean Tobin, who has been in outstanding form for the University of Mississippi team in the United States, won the National Senior 1500 metres title, the blue riband event of the senior championships. 

Nenagh sailor Aisling Keller took another step in her bid for an Olympics date in Tokyo by taking silver in the European U-21 Championships, while Clonmel woman Deirdre Fenlon secured a unique treble in a matter of months, winning the English, British and Commonwealth titles in powerlifting.

Above - Annerville Rugby award winner Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe

Young Carrick-on-Suir tennis player Zach Murphy finished the year as the top ranked under 14 player in the country in singles and boys doubles after a year in which he claimed the U-14 National Indoor Championship, among other prizes.

Thurles' Grainne Dwyer played on two Irish basketball teams - the five-by-five team and the three-by-three selection that qualified for the Europe Cup qualifiers. She also helped her club Glanmire to a third successive league and cup double.

Fethard and Killusty angler Sean Maher won the All-Ireland River Fly Fishing Championships, qualifying to represent Ireland in the 2019 World Fly Fishing Championships in Tasmania.

Amy Kennedy was a leading light of the Burgess-Duharra team that retained its Munster Club Senior Camogie Championship, as well as winning its sixth county title in-a-row; while rower Daire Lynch was a double national champion, enjoying success in the Intermediate Men's double scull event with fellow Clonmel rower Matt Dundon, and in the Intermediate Singles. He also finished runner-up to Olympic silver medalist Paul O'Donovan in the National Senior Championship.

Cashel hockey player Caoimhe Perdue was on the Irish U-18 panel that participated in a six nations tournament in Barcelona and in a three-day tournament against Scotland, when she won a Most Valued Player award.

Jim Kennedy has been honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award for his role in putting Ladies Football on the map in Tipperary, helping to form the county's first team. 

Above - Knocknagow Award winner Donie Nealon

Jerome Cahill and James Prentice became the first Tipperary men since 1991 to win Handball's All-Ireland Minor doubles 60x30, while in cricket Aaron Cawley was on the Irish U-19 team that secured a much-coveted place in next month's ICC World Cup in New Zealand, as well as lining out with the Irish U-17 team.

Lakeside, Templemore pitch and putt player Stephen Shoer won the Munster Senior matchplay and finished runner-up in the All-Ireland Senior strokeplay.

Finally, the Special Achievement award goes to four athletes - husband and wife Ned and Deirdre Crowe from Carrick-on-Suir were among the medals when they represented their country at the British Transplant Games; while Nenagh's Orla Hogan and Sheila Gregan were on the Irish team that competed at the World Transplant Games in Malaga, when Sheila won a bronze medal in the virtual triathlon.

The awards will be presented at the Sports Panel's annual function, which will be held in the Clonmel Park Hotel on Saturday January 20th.  

The full list of award winners is 

Angling - Sean Maher (Fethard)

Athletics - Sean Tobin (Clonmel)

Basketball - Grainne Dwyer (Thurles)

Camogie - Amy Kennedy (Burgess-Duharra)

Cricket - Aaron Cawley (Horse and Jockey)

Gaelic Football - Brian Fox (Eire Og Annacarty/Donohill)

Handball - James Prentice (Ballina) and Jerome Cahill (Lahorna)

Hockey - Caoimhe Perdue (Cashel)

Hurling - Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)

Ladies Football - Aisling McCarthy (Cahir)

Powerlifting - Deirdre Fenlon (Clonmel)

Pitch and Putt - Stephen Shoer (Lakeside, Templemore)

Rowing - Daire Lynch (Clonmel)

Rugby - Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe (Tipperary town)

Sailing - Aisling Keller (Nenagh)

Soccer - David Joyce (Clonmel Celtic)

Sean Lyons Sports Executive - Fergal Horgan (Knockavilla/Donaskeigh Kickhams)

Tennis - Zach Murphy (Carrick-on-Suir)

Special Achievement - Ned and Deirdre Crowe (Carrick-on-Suir); Orla Hogan and Sheila Gregan (Nenagh).

Lifetime Achievement - Jim Kennedy (Clonmel)

Knocknagow - Donie Nealon (Burgess)