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Kearney makes IRUPA shortlist

LEINSTER'S Rob Kearney has been listed with Ulster's Stephen Ferris and Munster's Ronan O'Gara as nominees for the IRUPA Players' Player of the Year award.

These are the only awards voted for by the players themselves, with votes collected from the entire professional player group across the country.

Brian O'Driscoll, Chairman of IRUPA said: "Winning an IRUPA award, which is voted for by the players who you play with and against, is the best mark of respect for any rugby player.

"The Player of the Year Award itself is particularly well regarded, as it rewards consistency over the entire year in both the international and provincial game."

The award is one of seven which will be announced at the annual awards on Wednesday 9th May at Dublin's Burlington Hotel.

Among the other awards is the IRUPA Nature Valley Young Player of the Year Award, contested this year by a feast of talented players including Ulster's Craig Gilroy, Leinster's Ian Madigan and Peter O'Mahony from Munster.

Gilroy is also nominated for the IRUPA Volkswagen Try of the Year for his score against Munster in the Heineken Cup.