Holland pays tribute to Cloughan’s young stars

Ballyclare RFC award winners: (standing, L-R) Stephen Crawford, Gary Weatherup, Michael Kirk, Jack Goudy, John Wasson, Ian Heaney, (kneeling) Paul Robinson and Robert Smith. INLT 21-928-CON
Ballyclare RFC award winners: (standing, L-R) Stephen Crawford, Gary Weatherup, Michael Kirk, Jack Goudy, John Wasson, Ian Heaney, (kneeling) Paul Robinson and Robert Smith. INLT 21-928-CON

At Ballyclare Rugby Club’s recent AGM, Mark Holland, Director of Rugby, praised two members whose skills were recognised at Ulster level.

Aaron Hall was named the Ulster Youth Player of the Year for his performances with Ulster U18s, while Dave Clarke was a member of the successful Ulster Juniors XV in the inter-provincial series against Leinster, Munster and Connacht.

Mr. Holland addressed the meeting giving a breakdown of each team’s performance during the season.

Robert Boyd’s men performed well on their return to the top flight of junior rugby, finishing 7th in Qualifying 1.

However, coach Chris Campbell, who was pleased with the team’s overall performance, has resigned, owing to pressure of coaching at Rainey Grammar School and travelling from Magherafelt.

The 2nd XV had a good season under the captaincy of Iain Holmes, finishing 3rd in their league and reaching the quarter-final of the Crawford Cup.

The 3rd XV led by Zack Robinson, had a difficult year, struggling for consistency in team personnel and performances and finishing 7th in Junior 4, while Marc Fox’s 4th XV had another good year finishing 3rd in Junior 5, as well as reaching the quarter- final of the Forster Cup.

The U18s who reached the semi-final of the Ulster Under 18s Cup.

At the election of office-bearers Alistair Lindsay continued as president, with Robin Byers, senior vice-president and David Campbell as junior vice-president, while Peter Kirk continues as club Chairman and David Lyttle as Honorary Secretary.

Awards: Gary Weatherup, 1st XV Player of the Year and Club Player of the year; Paul Robinson, 2nd XV Player of the year; Dave Roger, 3rd XV Player of the year; Ian Heaney, 4th XV Player of the year; Jack Goudy, Young Player of the year; John Wasson, Top Points Scorer; Michael Kirk, Top Try Scorer; Robert Smith, Coulter Cup (goal kicking); Stephen Crawford, Club Person of the Year.

At the youth rugby level the main winners were: Players’ Player of the Year, Andrew McLean(u14), Johnston Kirkpatrick(u16) and Matthew Coulter(u18).

Youth Clubman of the Year Ryan McCrory. Youth Player of the Year, Aaron Hall.

Coaches Player of the Year awards: Matthew Simpson (u14), Paul McGookin (u16) and Aaron Hall(u18).