Congratations to Michael Ryan (Manager of the Year), John McGrath (Senior Hurler of the Year) and Jake Morris (Minor Hurler of the Year), each of whom will be honoured on Saturday night at a gala dinner in the Rochestown Park Hotel in Cork.
Taking over as Manager in 2016 having served on previous management teams with Liam Sheedy and Eamon O’Shea, Michael Ryan brought plenty of experience and ability to the role. His new responsibilities fell lightly on his shoulders and he guided Tipperary to a second successive Munster title and then went on to lead them to All-Ireland success with an inspiring performance against old rivals Kilkenny in the All-Ireland final. Tipperary’s victory put paid to the notion that winning the Munster championship was an obstacle to All-Ireland success.
John McGrath, from the Loughmore-Castleiney club, made his championship debut against Cork in the Munster Quarter-Final this year, scoring 1 point and made a big impact on the game. He also scored a point in the in the semi-final against Limerick. John was at his explosive best in the Munster Final shooting 3-2 including a goal from a penalty and picked up the RTE Man of the Match Award. John received his first All-Star Award last month. He has also won many honours at underage level in both football and hurling with Tipperary.
Jake Morris from Nenagh Éire Óg, in the North Tipperary Division, was noted within the county as an excellent player at underage level and certainly one to watch for the future. He lived up to that expectation in 2016 by turning in marvellous performances in his first year at minor for Tipperary.
His minor championship debut was back in April last when Tipperary lost to Waterford in their opening round.
Undeterred Jake and Tipperary took the championship by storm after that, culminating in a hugely impressive performance in the Munster Minor Final in which they saw off a fancied Limerick outfit with apparent ease. Central to that performance was the contribution of Jake Morris who scored 1-4 from play as Tipperary secured their 39th Munster title with Jake securing the Man of the Match Award after his outstanding performance.
The full list of Munster GAA Award winners for 2016 are as follows:
Charlie McCarthy (Cork) – Hurling Hall of Fame
John Quane (Limerick) – Football Hall of Fame
Micheál Mac Conmara (An Clár) – Special Service Award – contribution to Scór
Michael Hurley (Cork) – Under 21 Football
Austin Gleeson (Waterford) – Under 21 Hurling
David Conroy (Clare) – Intermediate Hurling
Jamie Lee (Limerick) – Junior Football
Jake Morris (Tipperary) – Minor Hurling
David Clifford (Kerry) – Minor Football
Niamh Mulcahy (Limerick) – Camogie
Rena Buckley (Cork) – Ladies Football
Aishling O’Keeffe (Cork) – Handball
Ballyea (Clare) – Club
John McGrath (Tipperary) – Senior Hurling
Paul Geaney (Kerry) – Senior Football
Michael Ryan (Tipperary) – Manager
Visit the Munster GAA web site for more information.