The Joe Dempsey player’s player of the year award.
Each year the Roscrea RFC senior team management group hold an awards ceremony to honour the players who excelled throughout the season. In a normal year, this is held at the clubhouse with a large crowd, great food, a rocking bar and a festival like atmosphere. Unfortunately, last season ended like no other and in the most unpredictable fashion. In an incredibly exciting year, John Mahers men became the Invincibles after winning every game in an extraordinary season. They were crowned Leinster league Division 3 champions in March 2020, soon after the country became paralysed by covid 19 and the planned celebrations and subsequent award ceremony were not to be..
Seven months on, we have slowly found our way into a new sporting reality. Restrictions and guidelines still determine the route to every decision and impact every plan and strategy. But John Maher is a man of steely determination and not to be outdone by any international pandemic he has decided that now is the time to bring the Roscrea RFC Senior awards online. Now we can finally honour the men who gave us so much joy and filled us with pride during the 2019/2020 season. In truth every man who wore the Maroon Jersey deserves eternal credit and acclaim as the success of last season was one based on teamwork, collective determination and the indomitable spirit that can only manifest itself in a true band of brothers.
These are the categories!
This prestigious award is one that is presented each year to a very special type of player. One who has sought to take a journey of inner rugby enlightenment. Where once they were confused, unsure and lost, every training session terrified them, each game made them cry in fear. But now they have become a relentless machine, they have found their inner beast, they have become at one with the game, it flows through their veins. They hit rucks like a human avalanche, tackle like a maroon tsunami, pass and kick with the accuracy and tenacity of a deadly, highly tuned weapon. They are the best, they are the future, their time has come, because they are the MOST IMPROVED.
To win this award is to be finally accepted by men far far greater than you. The winner of this accolade of imperious accomplishment has made a journey of existential self fulfillment. At the start of the season nobody knew you, you were called a revolving variety of names, none of them the one your mother gave you. Older players pointed at you a lot , blamed you for your naivety, your impatience and your youthfulness. You looked up to these warriors and their stories of past battles and former conquests, more than anything you wanted to be like them, they are heroes to you. With this award, you get the one thing you yearn more than anything, This award is acceptance, you are the BEST NEWCOMER.
Each year one man rises above all others. He smirks at the first sign of danger, he laughs in face of fear, he pushes forward when those around him take a step back. He has become a legend, a totem, a man of indomitable character. When his voice is heard above the rabble, those around him know that it is the rallying call for courage, determination and pride. He is the flag bearer, he lays everything on the line, he wears his heart on his sleeve and he will not accept a backwards step, He is the MOST COMMITTED.
One cannot justify in mere words alone the level of greatness achieved by winning the Joe Dempsey perpetual trophy. Great men are capable of astounding feats, moments of brilliance, actions that echo for all eternity. But to be considered for this award, like the man who the trophy is named after, a player must be a man who always stands tall amongst his contemporaries. A warrior who is defiant when all seems lost, a leader when those around him need courage and hope, a winner when the odds are stacked against him, a legend when men need a beacon of invincibility. Songs will be written about you, tales of your incredible deeds will be embellished around camp fires and your story will become a shining light for all eternity. Step forward, accept the adoration, you are the greatest, you are the Player’s PLAYER OF THE YEAR!
Player of the year nominations
Jake Lawlor is from a little known place called New Zealand which is a tiny island owned by Australia. When he was a child he had a dream that some day he would grow up and play alongside legends of the game and grace the greatest amphitheaters in world rugby. Then one day his dream became a reality as he travelled half way around the world to play with his sporting hero Malachy Maher in Ardee on a wet and cold winters day in February. Jake is renowned for his no nonsense, hard hitting, no holes barred style of play, This is the result of him being raised on a diet of Beer and Sheep. Some day he may try to return to New Zealand if John Maher gives him back his passport. When he does, he will bring back incredible tales of his adventures with Mikey Treacy, Paul Mcnamara and Paddy Walsh, but know one will believe him. No ones that crazy.
Jonathon loves the glory. last season he scored a hatrick against Ardee RFC. The story made headlines in the local papers. Jonathon was very pleased, so much so that he bought 137 Midland tribunes, 68 Nenagh Guardians and 186 Tipp Stars to wallpaper his bedroom. Jonathon has made no secret about the fact that more than anything in this world, he yearns to win the Roscrea RFC Player of the year Trophy. He would proudly put it in his Trophy cabinet with the other prestigious awards that he purchased. Like the ones for Most Hat Tricks in a game v Ardee, Best Hat trick in a game v Ardee, More than 2 tries in a game v Ardee and the Gold flake covered ball from the time he scored 3 tries against Ardee.
Malachy Maher is a legend of the game, although born in the 1950s he is still a ferocious competitor and an inspiration to the younger players. Malachy is such a legend that when Jake Lawlor was just a boy he had a poster of Malachy on his wall in between his other heroes Dan Carter and Baywatches David Hasselhoff in his speedos. The younger players look up to Malachy like a father figure, which makes a lot of sense because he went to school with some of their fathers. In a single game last season those lucky enough to be present witnessed with awe Malachy intercepting 2 line outs, turning over 3 rucks, stopping 3 certain scores and assisting 2 brilliant tries, all while holding a cigarette in one hand and carrying Jake Lawlor on his shoulders. If that’s not the stuff of legends, then i don’t know what is.
In Portarlington , Ardee and Athboy when fathers want to frighten their sons with scary bedtime stories, they tell them a tale about a terrifying monster that came from the west. With disheveled ginger hair, a crooked smile and with a penchant for the thoroughly evil dark arts of the ruck, this beast left a trail of destruction and the taste of defeat and desolation in his wake. In some parts even his name sends shivers down the spine. They call him the Shambo.
Kieran is known for many things. Being Ger’s more handsome brother, having the best beard at the club and for being Seamus Treacy’s butler. Kieran has quite the reputation and is one of the toughest, meanest and hardest players on the pitch. But when off it, he is the most gentle of souls and is often found blissfully wandering, skipping hand in hand through the meadows with his shy little brother Ger collecting daisies and whispering to bees.
Sam never lets anyone else kick the ball. Its not that he’s selfish, its just that all he wants to do is impress his hero Shambo. He wants to be just like Shambo, because he misguidedly thinks Shambo is popular with the ladies. He even grew a nice beard and hopes to dye it orange some day. But no matter how much he tries and no matter how many snack boxes he eats he is finding it frustratingly difficult to make the transformation. Unfortunately, He’s just far too handsome.
The Joe Dempsey memorial Player’s player of the year trophy.
The Player’s player of the year trophy is an award that has hugely significant meaning to the Roscrea RFC senior players and the club in general. It bares the name of a former club legend and stalwart Joe Dempsey who passed away in 2018. It is presented in recognition of a player that reflects all the finest traits of Joe, honesty, dedication and perhaps most poignantly, an unwavering commitment to the club and their fellow players. Each year a committee made up of Senior team management select a group of nominees who they believe have excelled not just on the pitch but on the training ground and as representatives of the club. All those chosen are worthy of the award. Picking a single winner is never easy, but when one is chosen, they become the standard bearer for the club.
Senior Team Head coach John Maher has his say on the six Player’s players of the year award nominees…..
” Although late to the party, Jake became a vital cog in our team, Jake changed the dynamic of our back line and put in some bone crunching hits along the way. He definitely wore the Roscrea Jersey with pride”
” Jonathon had a great season last year scoring many a wonderful try. His controlled aggression in attack and defence being infectious to the players around him”
“Although he’s not the best man for the training ground, he always turns up for the big matches when most needed. He still covers every blade of grass on the field and his work rate is his strongest weapon.”
“Although no longer Captain, Shambo took on a huge leadership role last season. He leads from the front making hard yards when needed, always leading by example with his hard hits in defence”
“The entire front row could have been nominated but Kieran had a massive season last year playing his first campaign at loose head. He really stood up to the challenge working hard around the field and was a rock in the scrum.
“Still a very young man, when we needed 3 points, Sam stood up and was counted. He was ever reliable with his boot scoring some season defining points. A kicker like Sam brings confidence to the whole team”
Keep posted, Awards to be announced from Friday October 16th.