Lowry Success Story Celebrated At Offaly Sports Awards


Shane Lowry's remarkable success story was recognised by his home county when he was the star attraction at an awards scheme that honoured the outstanding Offaly sporting achievements of the past decade last Saturday night.

The Bridge House in Tullamore was the venue as almost 400 people thronged to a gala function where the Clara professional golfer was the recipient of the evening's top award, the Offaly Sports Achiever of the Decade.

His exploits since turning professional after winning the Irish Open as an amateur in 2009 have captured the imagination of his county and his attendance on the night was a great boost to the event. There were loud cheers as he was presented with his award by one of Offaly's most celebrated and revered sporting personalties, former footballer, Matt Connor.

The awards were organised by the Offaly Sports Partnership to celebrate the tenth anniversary of their formation back in 2006. They decided to mark the occasion in style by honouring the outstanding sporting performers in Offaly from 2006 to 2016. Award winners were selected from sixteen different sports categories along with the overall sports achiever award.

The importance of volunteerism in sport was also recognised with long serving Tullamore Harriers chairman and a man who is making his mark in athletics officialdom at world level, John Cronin feted as the winner of the life time contribution to sport award. The volunteer of the decade went to Edenderry boxing official, Liam Brereton and the youth volunteer award went to a young Drumcullen camogie worker, Ann Marie Guinan.

The winner of the overall sports achiever and the three volunteer awards had been named in advance but the other sixteen recipients were only announced on the night. There were three nominees in each category and this led to a great sense of anticipation as the winners were called to stage. It proved to be a very memorable occasion and the other award winners were:

  • Athletics - James Nolan;
  • Boxing - Lauren Hogan;
  • Camogie - Michaela Morkan;
  • Court sports - Susan Moran (basketball);
  • Gaelic football - Niall McNamee;
  • Golf - Stuart Grehan (*the overall sports achiever could not win the award in his own category);
  • Horse sport - Pat Smullen;
  • Hurling - Shane Dooley;
  • Ladies football - Mairead Daly;
  • Para sport - Nicole Turner;
  • Rugby - Peter Bracken;
  • Soccer - Iarfhlaith Davoren;
  • Special Olympics - Patrick Moore;
  • Water sports - Niamh Ní Chéilleachair (rowing);
  • Other sports (2) - Tracey McGrath (pitch and putt) and Francine Meehan (cycling and triathlon).

See pages 36, 35 and 34 in the sport section of the Tullamore Tribune for detailed coverage of the awards.