Sunday 18 August 2019

O'Halloran back on award shortlist

Connacht's Player of the Month Tiernan O’Halloran on the break
Connacht's Player of the Month Tiernan O’Halloran on the break

Daragh Small

Current Connacht Rugby Player of the Month Tiernan O'Halloran has once more been nominated by the Connacht squad for the monthly honour.

It has been another fantastic month for the province in the Pro12, where they played four games and won four. They beat Cardiff 36-31, Zebre 34-15, Ospreys 21-16, and Edinburgh 14-9.

The in-form full-back will fight it out with Bundee Aki and Nepia Fox-Matamua for the October award, which is voted for by the players after each game and is sponsored by Hartmanns of Galway.

The three nominees played in each game, and also won a man of the match each, as Connacht pushed themselves up to second in the Pro12 standings with some accomplished displays. In doing so they also made it five wins from their opening six rounds in the league. Full-back O'Halloran is a 24-year-old from Connemara, who has represented Ireland at underage level, and with his current level of performance, he has been ear-marked to win caps at senior level too.

He has made 83 appearances for the province with 15 tries.

Bundee Aki, 25, arrived at the province at the start of last season, from Super Rugby franchise the Chiefs, in New Zealand. He is centre who can play in the No 12 or No 13 channel, and is a native of Otahuhu. Aki has racked up 19 appearances and two tries since he joined Connacht.

Nepia Fox-Matamua is a 24-year-old New Zealander, who Connacht signed during last season, but he joined the province during pre-season when his ITM Cup campaign with Auckland had finished. He has been prolific ever since he arrived, with three tries in six games from openside flanker.

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