Gavin Coombes has been selected as Munster Rugby's Men’s Player of the Year
BACK-ROW Gavin Coombes has been named Munster Rugby Men’s Player of the Year for 2020/21 with the 23-year-old becoming the youngest ever winner of the award.
Tipperary native Dorothy Wall has deservedly been named Women’s Player of the Year following an excellent season with a number of top performances on the international stage.
Scrum-half Craig Casey has been named Young Player of the Year and the John McCarthy Award for Greencore Munster Rugby Academy Player of the Year went to Ben Healy.
Men’s Player of the Year – Gavin Coombes
The powerful back-row forward enjoyed a fantastic campaign and scored 15 tries in 22 appearances, the most tries ever scored by a player for Munster in one season.
The Skibbereen man featured in 22 of Munster’s 25 fixtures (17 starts) and was consistently superb throughout, averaging a try every 87 minutes.
Along with his record-breaking try-scoring exploits and powerful ball-carrying, Coombes was equally effective in defence and was a constant threat to the opposition at the breakdown.
A product of Skibbereen RFC and Bandon Grammar, Coombes has been named in the Ireland squad for the Vodafone Summer Series and will hope to cap off an outstanding campaign with his first Ireland cap.
Women’s Player of the Year – Dorothy Wall
The Women’s Player of the Year accolade was won by Dorothy Wall.
Tipperary native Wall enjoyed an excellent season with a number of top performances on the international stage.
The 21-year-old started playing rugby at Fethard & District RFC before progressing through the Munster pathway which included success at under-age level.
The back-row lined out for Munster Women during the 2019/2020 interprovincial championship before making her international debut against Scotland in the 2020 Six Nations.
Two further appearances as a replacement followed until Wall earned her first start for her country in the rescheduled Six Nations clash with Italy in October 2020.
Wall backed that up with three further starts in the recently concluded 2021 Six Nations as she established herself as an integral part of Adam Griggs’ side which included tries against Wales and Italy.
Her performances this season have been characterised by powerful ball-carrying and a relentless work-ethic in defence. Despite only having seven caps to her name, the Tipperary woman is already leading by her actions on the pitch. She is well-deserving of the Women’s Player of the Year accolade.
Due to Covid-19 government restrictions and limited activity across domestic rugby this season the awards focused on individual standout performances at elite level.
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.