DESPITE their defeat in last Sunday’s county final replay, Ballaghaderreen have secured eight nominations for the Mayo News/O’Neills Club Stars team announced today. The 15 players and five replacements will be revealed at the second annual Club Stars banquet – in association with AIB – which will be held on Friday, November 24 at Breaffy House Resort.
Six players from county champions Crossmolina are also in contention for the Club Stars, which honours the cream of Mayo’s club footballers. The final shake-up includes representatives of Ballina, Knockmore, Shrule/Glencorrib, Kiltane, Burrishoole and Claremorris. Five players from this year’s Mayo Intermediate Championship have also been nominated as ‘wild cards’.
All proceeds from the gala presentation night will go to the Mayo Cancer Support Association and the West of Ireland Alzheimer Foundation. Nominees as well as family, friends and club supporters will attend the banquet.
A host of special guests have also lent their support to the charity event, with Peter Ford, John O’Mahony, John Maughan, Noel Connelly, Pat Holmes, Maurice Sheridan and Jarlath Fallon all due to be in Breaffy House.
The 30 players were selected by Mayo GAA Board secretary Sean Feeney, Mid West Radio analyst Eamonn Clarke and Mayo News columnist Sean Rice. The trio now face the task of further whittling down that list and selecting the 15 players and five replacements who will make up the 2006 team. This selection will be announced on the night.
“It was really difficult to narrow it down to 30 players,” admitted Sean Rice. “I guess people would have expected that Ballaghaderreen and Crossmolina would dominate the list. Although Crossmolina are worthy county champions, Ballagh’ have really been the story of the summer. We believe that the players selected were the outstanding performers in this year’s Mayo Senior and Intermediate Football Championships.”
The list of nominees include three Mayo players who have been nominated for All-Star awards: Alan Dillon, Peadar Gardiner and Ciaran McDonald. The Crossmolina duo are among six players seeking their second successive Club Stars award – Kenneth Mortimer, John Brogan, James Nallen and Conor Mortimer were also among those selected in 2005.
This year, for the first time, nominees include players who were involved in the Intermediate Championship. The five players in this category include three involved in next Sunday’s final: Parke’s Simon Cloherty and Tourmakeady duo Brian Heneghan and David Prendergast. The other two ‘wild cards’ are the aforementioned Alan Dillon (Ballintubber) and defender Alan Noone, whose Cill Chomain Gaels side put in a heroic performance in the group stages of the competition.
Ballina Stephenites have secured three nominations (Kenny Golden, Eanna Casey and Pat Harte), with fellow semi-finalists Knockmore have two (John Brogan and Aidan Kilcoyne). Quarter-finalists Shrule/Glencorrib and Kiltane also have two apiece: Kenneth and Conor Mortimer for the former; John Scanlon and Shane Lindsay for the latter. Claremorris wing forward Mickey Mullins and Burrishoole half back Alan Moran are rewarded for outstanding individual performances throughout the year.
The Player of the Year and Manager of the Year will also receive presentations on the night.
A five course meal, live entertainment, an auction and a raffle are among the attractions lined up for the banquet at Breaffy House. Tickets for the night cost €50 and are available from The Mayo News on (098) 25311 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org