Tony Kelly is on the shortlist for Hurler of the Year while he is one of four Clare men nominated for All Stars.
Ballyea’s Kelly a winner of the Hurler of the Year award in 2013 is in the running alongside Limerick’s Gearoid Hegarty and Stephen Bennett of Waterford for the PwC GAA/GPA Hurler of the Year.
Across the course of four championship games, he scored 1-53. The fact that Clare were eliminated at the quarter-finals yet Kelly is considered for the accolade demonstrates how impressive his exploits of 2020 were.
He is also included as a nominee for a position on the All Star team at midfield. Limerick duo Cian Lynch and Will O’Donoghue, Waterford’s Jamie Barron, Michael Breen of Tipperary and Kilkenny’s Conor Browne are also nominated in the middle of the park.
Cathal Malone becomes the first Ennistymon man to be receive an All Star nomination. The Sixmilebridge hurler is recognised for his consistent hard-working endeavours during Brian Lohan’s first year in charge. He is the only Clare nominee in the forward-line among 17 other hurlers.
Following a debut senior inter-county season which saw him collect two clean sheets in four games, Feakle’s Eibhear Quilligan is rewarded with an All Star nominee. The LIT graduate is in the reckoning alongside Limerick’s Nickie Quaid and Stephen O’Keeffe from Waterford.
One of the standout performers lining out in front of Quilligan was Rory Hayes. The Shannon man was a regular at corner back for Lohan having been given his championship during the Gerry O’Connor and Donal Moloney era. As a result of his display, the Wolfe Tones utility man has been rewarded with an All-Star nomination.
It is the first time that Hayes, Malone and Quilligan have received an All Star nomination.
All-Ireland, Munster and National League winners, Limerick dominate 45 man shortlist with 14 nominees. Beaten All-Ireland and Munster finalists, Waterford are given 10 nominees followed by Galway (7), Kilkenny (5), Clare (4), Cork (2), Tipperary (2) and Dublin (1).
Kilkenny’s Eoin Cody (Ballyhale Shamrocks), Waterford’s Iarlaith Daly (Lismore) and Tipperary’s Jake Morris (Nenagh Éire Óg) are all nominated for Young Hurler of the Year.
Nominees were chosen by a panel of Gaelic Games correspondents from across, print, radio, TV and digital media, chaired by Uachtarán CLG John Horan. It has also been confirmed that there will be two additional hurling selections – a team of the year for the players in the Joe McDonagh Cup, as well as a Champion 15 that is comprised of star players from across the Christy Ring, Nickey Rackard and Lory Meagher Cups. Details of these teams will be announced next month.
It is intended that the presentation of the PwC All-Star awards will take place late next month in a TV show that will be in line with Covid-19 restrictions and will be confirmed “in due course,” a GAA spokesperson confirmed.
PwC All-Stars Hurling nominations 2020
Stephen O’Keeffe (Waterford), Nickie Quaid (Limerick), Eibhear Quilligan (Clare)
Seán Finn, Dan Morrissey, Barry Nash, Diarmuid Byrnes, Declan Hannon, Kyle Hayes (all Limerick)
Conor Prunty, Shane McNulty, Calum Lyons, Tadhg De Burcá (all Waterford)
Daithí Burke, Aidan Harte, Pádraic Mannion (all Galway)
Conor Delaney, Padraig Walsh (Kilkenny)
Rory Hayes (Clare), Mark Coleman (Cork), Ronan Maher (Tipperary)
Will O’Donoghue (Limerick), Cian Lynch (Limerick), Jamie Barron (Waterford), Tony Kelly (Clare), Michael Breen (Tipperary), Conor Browne (Kilkenny).
Gearóid Hegarty, Tom Morrissey, Aaron Gillane, Seamus Flanagan, Graeme Mulcahy (all Limerick)
Stephen Bennett, Dessie Hutchinson, Austin Gleeson, Jack Fagan (all Waterford)
Brian Concannon, Joe Canning, Conor Whelan, Cathal Mannion (all Galway)
TJ Reid, John Donnelly (Kilkenny)
Donal Burke (Dublin), Cathal Malone (Clare), Shane Kingston (Cork)
PwC GAA/GPA Young Hurler of the Year nominees
Jake Morris (Tipperary), Eoin Cody (Kilkenny), Iarlaith Daly (Waterford)
PwC GAA/GPA Hurler of the Year nominees
Gearóid Hegarty (Limerick), Tony Kelly (Clare), Stephen Bennett (Waterford)