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Murray named players' player of the year at Rugby Players Ireland awards

The Munster scrum-half has had an exceptional season recognised by his peers.

CONOR MURRAY HAS been named the Players’ Player of the Year by his fellow professionals at tonight’s Rugby Players Ireland awards ball in Dublin.

The Munster scrum-half was instrumental in Ireland’s first-ever victory over New Zealand last November in Chicago, scoring a superb try in the historic 40-29 success for Joe Schmidt’s side.

Conor Murray celebrates Robbie Henshaw's try Murray celebrates Robbie Henshaw's try against New Zealand. Source: INPHO

His form for Munster has been consistently excellent, while he started four of Ireland’s Six Nations games this year.

It has been an incredible season and one that I have thoroughly enjoyed,” said Murray. “We have had our challenges and some sad days along the way, but to have both Munster and Ireland performing at the highest level has been very satisfying.

“Being recognised in this way by my peers is special. I just hope that I can continue to do my job in the important games that are to come.”

Murray beat Irish team-mates CJ Stander, Robbie Henshaw and Tadhg Furlong to the award, although Leinster prop Furlong did manage to pick up the Supporters’ Player of the Year title.

Furlong has had a stunning breakthrough season at Test level, making himself Ireland’s undisputed first-choice at tighthead as he has impressed with his set-piece ability and skill level around the pitch.

Henshaw was also among the winners, collecting the Try of the Year honour for his finish from a close-range scrum in the win over New Zealand.

Meanwhile, Garry Ringrose was named as Nevin Spence Young Player of the Year at the RPI awards ceremony after breaking into the Ireland team this season and also showing his class for Leinster.

Garry Ringrose Ringrose was named young player of the year.

Inducted into the Hall of Fame this year was current Leicester Tigers assistant coach Geordan Murphy, who won 74 caps for Ireland during his playing days.

Ireland loosehead Lindsay Peat won the Women’s XVs Player of the Year award after shining for Tom Tierney’s side, while the lightning-quick Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe was 7s Player of the Year for the second season in a row.

Connacht’s Ronan Loughney picked up the RPI’s Medal for Excellence, which acknowledges his long-term contribution on the pitch for the western province, as well as his efforts off the pitch.

Jake Heenan of Connacht and Ireland dual-international Hannah Tyrell both scooped Contribution to Irish Society honours, while a public vote decided that Ireland’s win over New Zealand was Rugby Moment of the Year, with Donnacha Ryan collecting the award.

Winning a Rugby Players Ireland award is one of the highest honours a player can receive in the game here in Ireland,” said RPI action CEO Simon Keogh.

“There have been many great achievements by Irish players this year, but to be acknowledged by your team-mates and opponents in this manner shows just how much of an impact you have made throughout the season.

“I am thrilled for Conor who has enjoyed a fantastic season, reaching a level of consistency that few can match.”

Rugby Players Ireland 2017 awards winners:

Players’ Player of the Year: Conor Murray

Supporter’s Player of the Year: Tadhg Furlong

Nevin Spence Young Player of the Year: Garry Ringrose

Try of the Year: Robbie Henshaw (v New Zealand)

Women’s XV Player of the Year: Lindsay Peat

Women’s 7s Player of the Year: Amee-Leigh Murphy Crowe

Medal for Excellence: Ronan Loughney

Hall of Fame: Geordan Murphy

Contribution to Irish Society: Hannah Tyrrell and Jake Heenan

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Murray Kinsella

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