Friday 20 October 2017

Joyce clan aim to keep winning run going

After winning three of the last four, Isobel and Ed are keen to bag more cricket gongs for family

Ed Joyce, pictured above in action for Ireland, is up for the KPC Group Men’s International Player of the Year Award. Photo: Rob O'Connor/Sportsfile
Ed Joyce, pictured above in action for Ireland, is up for the KPC Group Men’s International Player of the Year Award. Photo: Rob O'Connor/Sportsfile

Ger Siggins

While Irish cricket's most significant successes of 2016 were probably achieved off the field, there will still be much to celebrate at the KPC Group awards ceremony in Dublin next week. Three of the last four Player of the Year awards have been won by members of the Joyce family, and that extraordinary clan are in the running to collect two more on Friday.

The KPC Group Men's International Player of the Year Award will be fought over by Ed Joyce, Kevin O'Brien and Tim Murtagh, with Joyce the top run-scorer with 522 in nine games - including two centuries in the fiery ODI series against Afghanistan.

O'Brien had a fine all-round season - 501 runs and 26 wickets - and despite playing the summer in Leicestershire, also turned out in each format for the all-conquering Leinster Lightning. Murtagh also took 26 wickets, his 4-29 against Hong Kong helping keep Ireland top of the Inter-Continental Cup table. Murtagh was also a key man in Middlesex winning the county championship for the first time in 23 years.

The Cricketshop.ie Women's International Player of the Year Award will go to one of Isobel Joyce, Kim Garth - both of whom have won the award before - and Ciara Metcalfe.

All three had excellent seasons and played important roles in helping Ireland to record wins over South Africa and Bangladesh.

Metcalfe and Garth were the joint leading wicket-takers with 22, while Metcalfe's 4-15 against Sri Lanka in the World Twenty20 was the second-best bowling performance of the whole tournament. Garth was also a prolific run-scorer, making 263 at an average of 33. Joyce, who is currently playing for Tasmania, made 310 runs and took 16 wickets.

The Sunday Independent Aengus Fanning International Emerging Player of the Year Award sees Barry McCarthy, Robyn Lewis and Jenny Gray vying for the prestigious award, and they are all profiled on the right.

The Hanley Energy Inter-Provincial Player of the Year Award shortlist is made up of John Anderson, who led Leinster Lightning from the front by scoring 440 runs, and the international spin pair of Andy McBrine and George Dockrell. Anderson is also shortlisted for the O'Neill's Club Player of the Year alongside Eddie Richardson (North County) and Simmi Singh (YMCA).

There are eight clubs shortlisted for the Tildenet Club of the Year Award: Clontarf, Cork County, Ardmore, Fox Lodge, Ballyspallen, Laois, Ring Commons and Kerry.

Other awards will be made to the Flogas Junior Player of the Year, the Shapoorji Pallonji Academy Player of the Year, the Toyota Super 3 Player of the Year, and the Notts Sport Coach of the Year.

The unsung officials are recognised with the IAA sponsored award, with umpires Paul Reynolds and Alan Neill vying with scoring doyenne Stella Downes. Other key people are also honoured in the Oasis Volunteer of the Year, which has a shortlist of five: Mary McMahon (Leinster), Willie Dwyer (The Hills), Herbie Honohan (Wexford Wanderers), Sean Farrell (Bagenalstown) and Lorraine McKeaney (Malahide).

There will also be presentations for the Gibney's Outstanding Contribution to Irish Cricket and the annual induction to the Cricket Writers of Ireland Hall of Fame.

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