Sports

Rugby club celebrates unbelievable season

Wednesday, 3 May 2017

Rugby club celebrates unbelievable season thumbnailAndrew Morrison, Chris Allen and Stephen Irvine in their new club blazers, presented to mark 100 All-Ireland League caps

SPEAKING at the annual awards dinner of Banbridge Rugby Club on Saturday night, (29 April) President John Ewart said that the past season had been unbelieveable.

"Who would have believed," he said, "when we moved up from the junior ranks 19 years ago that we would now be one of the top three clubs in Ulster? "I have thoroughly enjoyed every minute of a wonderful season, watching the Firsts play some great rugby to finish top of Division 2A and claim their place deservedly alongside Ballymena and Ballynahinch in Division 1B next season.

"The coaches and players deserve all the praise that has come their way for all the hard work and commitment that has brought this success about.

"I am certain that we will give a good account of ourselves next season. We have nothing to fear as the squad is still young and improving and all the supporters are looking forward to the challenge. " Firsts' captain Adam Ervine expressed the players' appreciation for all the support the team had received over the season and especially for that final game against Sunday's Well in Cork.

"The boost we got when we ran onto the Musgrave Park pitch cheered on by all those supporters - that gave the team such a lift," he commented.

"We're just glad that we were able to finish the job off." It was the club skipper who picked up the first award of the evening, The Paul Tamati Shield for top try scorer, with his tally of 12 tries just edging it over Stephen Irvine.

But the No 8 was not disappointed as he was awarded the Firsts' Player of the Year Trophy.

Ben Carson was Seconds' Player of the Year, Willie Taylor picked up the Thirds' award and Kris Campbell was the pick of the Fourths' team management.

Robin Sinton ended an outstanding debut season at flank forward on the Firsts by being awarded the Bill McMaster Trophy for best newcomer, while Stuart Cromie was a popular winner of the Outlook Cup for Most Improved Player.

The hard work carried out by Ivan Hutchinson and James Magowan behind the scenes on improvements to the clubhouse was recognised by the joint award of the Club Honours Shield.

Chris Allen, Stephen Irvine and Andrew Morrison were awarded club blazers for having played 100 games in the All-Ireland League and Ross Haughey's appearances on all four club sides over the course of the season was also given due recognition.

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