All Star and GPA awards merger announced

Updated: Wednesday, 07 Sep 2011 22:22

Christy Cooney - GAA President welcomed the announcement
Christy Cooney - GAA President welcomed the announcement


The GAA All Star awards and the GPA awards are to merge this year under the sponsorship of car manufacturer Opel.

The awards will continue to be broadcast live on RTÉ television with this year's event at the Convention Centre Dublin scheduled for 21 October.

The move, which was announced at Croke Park this morning, will see the achievements of players recognised jointly for the first time.

Commenting on the announcement, GAA President Christy Cooney said: "This is a further indication of the ongoing co-operation with our players and I acknowledge the assistance of Dessie Farrell and his team in helping to bring us to this point.

"We look forward to working closely with Opel, who have been great supporters of our players through the GPA for a considerable time, to ensure that the All-Star awards remain amongst the most coveted in Irish sport."

GPA Chief Executive Officer Dessie Farrell said: "The announcement of a joint awards scheme under the sponsorship of Opel was a logical step in the partnership between the GAA and the players’ association and reflects the strengthening relationship between both bodies.

"While it was not feasible to keep two awards schemes in operation it was important for both organisations that the integrity of the respective awards was appreciated under the new arrangement.

"I would like to thank sincerely Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael, Criostóir Ó Cuana and Dave Sheeran, MD of Opel Ireland for their support in developing the new joint scheme and we look forward to celebrating the contribution of our hurlers and footballers to the 2011 season at the All-Stars banquet next month."

The new arrangement will see a committee of GAA journalists select the All-Star team.

Player of the Year and Player of the Month awards will be awarded by the intercounty playing group.

There will also be Player of the Year awards for the best player in the Christy Ring, Nicky Rackard and Lory Meagher Cups for weaker hurling counties, and two Young Player of the Year awards.

All-Star winners will each receive €1,500 and players of the year will receive €5,000. Players of the month will receive €1,000.