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A very good year four Ulster rugby

Stephen Ferris, Rory Best, Simon Danielli and Ed O’Donoghue are the four contenders for the prestigious Ulster Player of the Year Award.

The glittering annual Magners Ulster Rugby Awards Ceremony takes place at the Ramada Hotel, Belfast on Thursday, May 14.

From schools and youth, to club and professional rugby, the awards recognise outstanding achievement in the game.

Speaking about Magners’ first year as the title sponsor of the annual Ulster Rugby Awards, Gavan Morris, Marketing Manager, Magners Irish Cider said: "One of the great opportunities afforded by the new contract with Ulster Rugby is the sponsorship of their Annual Rugby Awards Dinner.

"We are delighted to be involved with an event which is regarded as the highlight of the rugby season and to be part of acknowledging the work of key rugby officials and players."

While the top accolade of Magners Ulster Rugby Personality of the Year will remain a closely guarded secret until the night, the nominees for the other awards represent clubs from right across the province and the standard is incredibly high.

BANK OF IRELAND ULSTER PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Rory Best (Ulster Rugby & Belfast Harlequins,) Stephen Ferris (Ulster Rugby & Dungannon RFC,) Ed O'Donoghue (Ulster Rugby & Instonians RFC,) Simon Danielli (Ulster Rugby & Malone RFC.)

CALOR GAS YOUTH PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Stephen Irvine (Banbridge RFC,) Dominic Gallagher (Lisburn RFC,) Chris McDonald (City of Derry RFC.)

NORTHERN BANK LTD SCHOOLS PLAYER OF THE YEAR: James McKinney (Campbell College,) Steven Lecky (Methodist College,) Niall Annett (Methodist College.)

KUKRI CLUB OF THE YEAR: Ballynahinch RFC; City of Derry RFC; Bangor RFC; Grosvenor RFC.

CITY OF DERRY/KEN GOODALL AWARD CLUB PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Sam McKinney (Ballymena RFC,) Mark Robinson (Queens RFC,) Chris Stevenson ( Ballynahinch RFC,) Ian Caldwell (Ballymena RFC.)

PERENNIALS DORRINGTON B. FAULKNER, "UNSUNG HERO" AWARD: Barry Leacock (Malone RFC,) Alan Egner (Grosvenor RFC,) William Davidson (Armagh RFC,) WG Boles (Dungannon RFC.)

PHOENIX ACADEMY PLAYER: Ian Whitten (Ballymena RFC,) Willie Faloon (Ballynahinch RFC,) Ian Porter (Queens RFC.)

VODAFONE YOUNG ULSTER PLAYER OF THE YEAR:Darren Cave (Ulster Rugby & Belfast Harlequins,) Ian Whitten (Ulster Rugby & Ballymena RFC,) David Pollock (Ulster Rugby & Dungannon)


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