National University of Ireland Galway have announced the recipients of the 2007 Sports Awards. The awards will be presented by guest of honour, Mr. Seán Ó Ceallaigh, newly appointed Executive Director of the Irish Institute of Sport. The award ceremony will take place tonight, Thursday, 8 March in the Ardilaun House Hotel, Galway at 8pm.
Among the award winners announced is Paul Hession, who will receive the Special Achievement Award 2007. Paul, from Athenry, is a current medical student and holds both silver and bronze medals in the 200m at the World Student Games in Turkey and Turkey in 2003 & 2005, respectively. He was also a semi-finalist in the World Athletic Championships in Helsinki in 2005. This season he has taken the athletics world by storm with world class performances in the 60m dash. Paul also made history recently when he became the first Irishman ever to qualify for a flat sprint final in a major championship, setting a new Irish record at the European Indoor Championships in Birmingham.
This year's Sports Awards recipients are:
- Archery: Niamh Breathnach, Corr na Mona, Co. Galway.
- Athletics: Ann Loughnane, Loughrea, Co. Galway.
- Boxing: Daniel Ayiotis, Dublin.
- Camogie: Claire McMahon, Co. Clare.
- Hurling: Darragh Egan, Kildangan, Co. Tipperary.
- Ladies Gaelic Football: Una Carroll, Galway.
- Ladies Soccer: Meabh de Burca, Galway.
- Ladies Rugby: Aoife Maher, Loughrea, Co. Galway.
- Men's Gaelic Football: David Conway, Laois.
- Men's Rugby: John Mackey, Tipperary.
- Men's Soccer: Robert Gaynor, Roscommon.
- Rowing: James Wall and Paul Murray, Galway.
- Surfing: Eoin McCarthy Deering, Dublin.
- Team Award: Sailing – Cathal Clarke, Paul Sexton, Paul Ruigrok, Rob McFeely, Cillian Devlin, Maguerite Leech, Lauren Fisher and Nick Quigley.
- Team Award: Senior Men's Rowing squad – Seán Carolan, Seán Heaney, Dave Mannion, Danny O'Dowd, Phillip O'Connell, Breffney Morgan, Evin Donnelly, John Forde, Johnny Naughton, Paul Giblin, Ruadhán Cooke (cox).
- Team Award: Ladies Rowing – Women's Novice Squad – Marika Upton, Mary Clare Sheridan, Anne Marie Giblin, Mary Guiney, Niamh Rogan, Dee Nally, Muireann Egan, Julia Bulla, Peig Costello.
Announcing the awardees, Tony Regan, Sports and Recreation Officer, NUI Galway said: "Each year, NUI Galway recognises outstanding contribution of student athletes across many diverse sporting disciplines for their achievements and their potential for future development in sport. These outstanding athletes serve as an inspiration and we are both proud and honoured to have them as current students of NUI Galway.
We are particularly proud at the moment with the World Class performances of our Rowers and Athletes in the International Arena and it is possible that James Wall, Paul Murray, Cormac Folan & Alan Martin with Athletes Paul Hession & Olive Loughnane and Aideen N Challaráin (Kayak) will be representing Ireland at the Beijing Olympics in 2008".
Mr. Regan went on to say: "the development and nurturing of potential talent of our elite athletes is crucial and these awards are in recognition of the student's sporting achievements to date".
The NUI Galway Sports Awards are given out each year in recognition of the NUI Galway students who excelled in the world of sport during the previous academic year and are supported by Bank of Ireland University Branch.
For further information please contact:
Tony Regan, Sports and Recreation Officer, NUI Galway 086-2909762