The 2011 Bord Gáis Energy Munster GAA Awards were presented on Saturday night at the Malton Hotel, Killarney, in front of a large attendance.
Tony Kelly from Ballyea was honoured with the provincial minor hurler of the year award, while Clarecastle’s Patrick Kelly received the intermediate hurler of the year accolade.
Patrick Kelly has played at all levels for his club, Clarecastle, from U-12 to senior. His father, Tony, played all levels with Clare and also trained the Clare hurlers in the 1980s. Patrick represented St Flannan’s College and is currently a scholarship student, past captain and past chairperson of NUI Galway. He has won two Fitzgibbon Cup medals with WIT in 2008 and NUIG in 2010, announcing himself on the national stage in the NUIG win. He has won U-21 All Ireland honours with Clare in their success in 2009 and in the year past starred for the Clare intermediate hurling team. Pat starred firstly at wing-back in 2010 and with great success at full-back as he won firstly the Munster Championship against Limerick and then a memorable All Ireland success against Kilkenny in Semple Stadium. He is currently a member of the Clare senior panel.
Eighteen-year-old Tony Kelly from the Ballyea club has already played all levels for his club who won the U-21B hurling title this year. His father, Donal, played all levels for Ballyea and Clarecastle whilst his sister, Lorraine, has starred for the Clare senior ladies’ football side. The versatile midfielder has played hurling and football at senior level for St Flannan’s College and is no mean footballer, helping sister club Clondegad to intermediate honours in 2011. In the coming months, he will be a key figure with St Flannan’s in their bid for both Harty Cup and Corn Uí Mhuiri (football) glory. At county level, Tony has already played all levels bar senior and is the proud holder of two Munster minor medals with some sterling performances in the grade over the last two seasons. He was recently invited to join the 2012 Clare senior panel.
RTÉ’s Eileen Dunne acted as MC and speakers included Sean Walsh (Munster GAA chairman) and John Mullins (CEO of Bord Gáis Éireann).
Gerald McCarthy (hurling hall of fame winner) spoke on behalf of the recipients while former Kerry footballer Darragh Ó Sé was the special guest speaker.
The other award winners were:
* Hall of Fame Award Hurling: Gerald McCarthy, Cork
* Hall of Fame Award Football: Paudie Lynch, Kerry
* Senior Hurling Award: Lar Corbett, Tipperary
* Senior Football Award: Declan O’Sullivan, Kerry
* Special Merit Award: Jerry Ring, Tipperary
* Media Award: Michael Scanlon, C103
* Referee Award: Eddie Cunningham, Waterford
* Education Award: Willie Dowling, Kerry
* Manager of the Year: David Power, Tipperary
* Distinguished Service to GAA Award: Gerry Bennis, Limerick
* U-21 Hurling Award: Aidan Walsh, Cork
* U-21 Football Award: Ciaran Sheehan, Cork
* Minor Football Award: TJ Ryan, Tipperary
* Camogie Award: Jill Horan, Cork
* Ladies Football Award: Deirdre O’Reilly, Cork
* Handball Award: Catriona Casey, Cork
* Junior Football: Andrew O’Sullivan, Cork
* Club of the Year: Ná Piarsaigh, Limerick
* Supporter of the Year: Cyril Kavanagh, Cork.