JONATHAN Sexton has been named Guinness Rugby Writers of Ireland Player of the Year at the annual Guinness Rugby Writers of Ireland Awards.
He collected his award at a function in the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin this evening.
The award is decided by the Irish rugby media
“It has been a long time since I won an individual award like the Guinness Rugby Writers of Ireland Player of the Year", Sexton said.
"It’s not something you set out to achieve, you want to win things from a team perspective, but it is nice to see your efforts recognised on an individual basis.
"As an out half you need to thank all of the players you’ve played with and the coaches as well, because you rely on them so heavily. It’s a good sign that if the No 10 wins an award that the team has done their job well, too."
Sexton’s former province, Leinster, were awarded the Dave Guiney Team of the Year for the third year running after claiming three trophies last season, namely the Amlin Challenge Cup, RaboDirect Pro12 League and the British & Irish Cup.
Niamh Briggs picked up the Women’s Player of the Year after a fantastic season where she played an instrumental role in the Irish Women’s team historic Grand Slam victory in the Six Nations.
The Women’s side were also honoured for their heroics with a Special Recognition Award.
Lansdowne FC were voted Club of the Year due to their success in the All-Ireland League this past season, as they sauntered to the title by a margin of 18 points.
The Tom Rooney Award went to Alain Rolland for his exceptional contribution to refereeing, which saw him represent Ireland at the highest level on the world stage.
Former Ireland and British & Irish Lions player and manager Donal Lenihan was inducted into the Guinness Hall of Fame.
The award ceremony was hosted by Peter O’Brien of Guinness, John D. O’Brien, Honorary Secretary and Michael Corcoran, incoming Chairman of the Rugby Writers of Ireland.