GAA: Antrim honours stars
The Antrim county board has been busily engaged in dishing out awards recently.
Players in football and hurling were honoured at a presentation dinner held in the Tullyglass Hotel, Ballymena.
And while the players were very much the focus of attention, the board did not forget that group of people without whom there would be no matches - the referees.
Antrim PRO Terry Cormican said: "We have always felt that our referees deserve recognition and we make sure that they are not forgotten."
Footballer of the Year accolade went to James Delargy from the thriving St Brigid's club in south Belfast, while Lamh Dhearg ace Michael Herron received the Hurler of the Year award.
The various age-groups winners were also honoured at what proved to be a hugely enjoyable function.
Guest speaker was Ulster football team manager Brian McEniff who exhorted Antrim to maintain the progress that is being made at all levels.
County chairman John McSparran, still fighting a strong case for better treatment for Antrim in an All Ireland hurling context, saw his home club Cushendun feted for their intermediate championship success.
Antrim, pipped by Wicklow in the Tommy Murphy Cup final, hope to make a more decisive impact in the football sector in 2008 and Brian McEniff passed on a few tips as to just how this might be achieved.
But the mood was celebratory rather than expectant at the Tullyglass House Hotel - and you could hardly blame anyone for that.