For years we’ve honoured our intercounty camogie stars with the Camogie All-Star awards.
This year, for the Kilkenny championships, we’ll be seeing a new club All-Star Team of the Year at senior, intermediate and junior grade, driven by Camán Caint, our dedicated camogie podcast which, for season one, is focusing on the Kilkenny club championships.
Roche Injury Clinic, Suirside Farm Potatoes and Killaree Lighting Services have been confirmed as the category sponsors for the inaugural Club All-Star awards, selection for which is already underway.
While presenters Martin Quilty and Áine Fahey will be doing the grand unveiling, there’s a network of selectors, referees, club reps and “a few spies” in the mix covering local games until the end of the championship, their task to return overall teams of the year at the three adult grades.
“From my point of view anyway, I love to see like a really new player performing really well”, says Áine Fahey, who may find herself in the running while representing Tullaroan on the pitch.
“It may not be a household name or whatever the case may be, but I think like that’s the kind of player that I look to, to be putting in a team, someone that can just work really hard, that can just build and gel and can be just so versatile.”
“It’s going to be great fun and I can’t wait to start trashing this out. And there’s definitely going to be a couple of rows, I’d imagine we’re going to have someone in the middle of the ring trying to separate or the vote that’s going on”, says Fahey when it comes to team selection.
All adult grades included
The fact that in the first year of the awards all three grades will be celebrated is a bonus.
“It’s going to be really good to promote camogie in Kilkenny and it’s really good that it’s going to be for all three grades as well because sometimes the junior and intermediate grade probably don’t get enough recognition as the senior grade.”
“The best 15 are going to come out of every grade and everyone has an equal chance of getting through [to the final selection]”, says Camán Caint presenter Martin Quilty, adding that “the jerseys are fab.”
Along with naming the respective teams of the year, each player in each grade will be presented with a specially commissioned jersey, designed by Intosport in Castlecomer, to mark the award.
When it comes to hearing the GAA All-Star awards, there’s often talk that you win an All-Star depending on how you play in an All-Ireland semi-final or final. For the Kilkenny camogie championships, that won’t be the case.
“It’s not just it’s not going to be just picked on like county semifinals and county finals either”, adds Áine.
“This has been worked on since last weekend. We’ve had people out looking and the referees have been giving some really good feedback from the games as well, so you know, fear not. It will be done as equally and as fairly as we can do it.
“Our aim is to promote camogie and it’s not going to be given to somebody because they scored 5-16 and an under-14 Féile final ten years ago – it’s being done on this year.”
Hopefully, it will be this year, and for years to come.