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Leinster sweep the board at Irish awards

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Ireland and Leinster star Gordon D’Arcy has been voted the Players’ Player of the Year by his peers at the 5th annual BT Irish Rugby Union Players Association (IRUPA) awards ceremony.

He was not the only Leinsterman celebrating – the province swept the board in all the other categories, bar none.

Shane Horgan was amongst those honoured on the Wednesday night when he picked up the Try of the Year award – for the second year running – for his try against England at Croke Park.

Meanwhile, former Leinster and Ireland loose forward Victor Costello was inducted into Ireland’s Hall of Fame, and Leinster fullback/wing Luke Fitzgerald collected the Young Player of the Year award.

Despite missing out on the overall Player of the Six Nations award to Ireland skipper Brian O’Driscoll, D’Arcy was delighted to have won the IRUPA award – he is the first player to win the prestigious gong twice.

“The season gets better and better for me both personally and for the teams I have played in,” said the centre.

“This is the top rugby award in Ireland and I am delighted to have won it for the second time.

“It gives me great pleasure to win this award as it comes from the people I play with and against throughout the season.”

The awards were held to celebrate a year of individual achievements in Irish rugby in what was another successful season which saw Ireland win the Triple Crown for the third time in four years, Leinster and Munster reaching the quarter-finals s of the Heineken Cup and Leinster and Ulster challenging once again for the Magners League title in the coming weeks.

“What makes these awards so special is that they are voted for by the players from all four provinces,” said IRUPA boss Niall Woods.

“Congratulations to all those nominated and in particular to Gordon, Stephen, Shane, Luke and my old friend Victor in winning what are the most sought after awards in Irish rugby.”

BT IRUPA Players’ Player of the Year – Gordon D’Arcy (Leinster)

IRUPA Hooke & MacDonald Hall of Fame Inductee – Victor Costello (Leinster)

IRUPA Irish Mortgage Corporation Newcomer of the Year – Luke Fitzgerald (Leinster)

IRUPA Tyrone Crystal Try of the Year – Shane Horgan (Ireland v England)

IRUPA Club Energise Sport Unsung Hero – Stephen Keogh (Leinster)

IRUPA Green Giant Special Merit Award – Garrett Culliton (Laois and Corkman wheelchair rugby)

365 Digital

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