The Irish Rugby Union Players’ Association has today unveiled the nominations for the Zurich Irish Rugby Players’ Awards, taking place on the 4th of May at the DoubleTree Hilton Hotel Dublin.

Ten awards will be given out at the ceremony, culminating in Irish rugby’s ultimate accolade being presented – the Zurich IRUPA Players’ Player of the Year Award. For the first time ever the four shortlisted nominees of the main award consist of one from each Irish province – Rory Best (Ulster), Robbie Henshaw (Connacht) Jack McGrath (Leinster) and CJ Stander (Munster).  Voted on by their fellow professional teammates, the four finalists have been selected based on consistent form across the Pro 12, Champions Cup, Challenge Cup, World Cup and 6 Nations.

For the second consecutive year, Robbie Henshaw has been nominated after standing out in both the World Cup and 6 Nations tournaments.  Provincially Henshaw was once again a shining light in what was a landmark year for Connacht rugby and its ongoing evolution.

The Nevin Spence Young Player of the Year – an award which Henshaw has won for the last three years – will also be announced. This year it is contested by a host of talented young players who have stormed onto the scene. Leinster have two representatives in Gary Ringrose and Josh Van Der Flier, whilst Ulster’s blockbusting midfielder Stuart McCloskey rounds out the trio. The three players have had breakthrough seasons for their provinces with the latter two making their debuts for Ireland in the 6 Nations

Amongst the other prestigious awards, the BNY Mellon Hall of Fame will take place on the night, with the recipient to be announced in due course.

Other awards presented on the evening include: The Volkswagen Try of the Year, The Irish Times Supporters’ Player of the Year, the Zurich Contribution to Irish Society Award, the BNY Mellon Women’s XVs Player of the Year, the IRUPA Women’s 7’s Player of the Year, the Powerscourt Hotel Resort & Spa Moment of the Year and The Vodafone Medal for Excellence.

Commenting on the Awards night was Former IRUPA Board Member and Player of the Year 2015, Paul O’Connell: “To be nominated for an IRUPA Award is such a fantastic achievement, it really is a great honour to be recognised by your fellow players.  I would like to congratulate all the nominees, wish them the best and hope they enjoy the night”. 

For awards updates, follow us on Twitter @IRUPA or use the hashtag: #RugbyAwards16. For more information on IRUPA, please visit www.irupa.ie  

ZURICH IRUPA PLAYERS’ PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2016

Robbie Henshaw            Connacht

CJ Stander                       Munster

Jack McGrath                  Leinster

Rory Best                         Ulster

 

NEVIN SPENCE YOUNG PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2016

Josh Van Der Flier                       Leinster

Stuart Mccluskey                        Ulster

Gary Ringrose                             Leinster

 

BNY MELLON IRUPA HALL OF FAME 2016

Recipient to be announced the week of 25th of April 2016

VOLKSWAGEN TRY OF YEAR 2016

Craig Gilroy                               Ulster v Scarlets                          Guinness Pro12

Jamie Heaslip                            Ireland v Italy                            RBS 6 Nations

Matt Healy                                 Connacht v Grenoble                  Challenge Cup

 

IRISH TIMES SUPPORTERS’ PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2016

Robbie Henshaw                      Connacht

Jack McGrath                           Leinster

Rory Best                                  Ulster

Conor Murray                            Munster

Jonathon Sexton                       Leinster

CJ Stander                                 Munster

Jared Payne                                Ulster

Matt Healy                                 Connacht

 

ZURICH CONTRIBUTION TO IRISH SOCIETY 2016

The award will be presented at the ceremony on Wednesday 4th May 2016.

 

BNY MELLON WOMEN’S XVs PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2016

Sene Naoupu                              Galwegians

Paula Fitzpatrick                         St. Mary’s

Ciara Griffin                                Tralee

 

POWERSCOURT HOTEL MOMENT OF THE YEAR 2016

Voted by the public on Twitter @PowerscourtHtl #PHMoment16 the Rugby Moment of the Year will be unveiled at the Awards ceremony on Wednesday 4th May 2016.

 

VODAFONE Medal for Excellence 2016

Isaac Boss                      Leinster

Ronan Loughney            Connacht

John Muldoon                Connacht

 

IRUPA WOMEN’S SEVENS PLAYER OF THE YEAR 2016

Amee Leigh Murphy Crowe

Ashleigh Baxter

Audrey Flynn

 

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