The GAA seasons may never quite end and tend to merge but there are punctuation marks and one of those is the award for the Electric Ireland Rising Stars in Higher Education GAA.
These awards, part of Electric Ireland’s backing for the third level tournaments that light up February and March, acknowledge outstanding performances in the battle for the third level football and hurling championships.
Electric Ireland Fitzgibbon Cup hurling champions UL were a class apart in 2018 and they dominate the final 15 in hurling with no fewer than seven young heroes chosen on a star-studded selection that has a representation from across five teams.
The battle for the Electric Ireland Sigerson Cup was also a close fought affair and again there are five third level institutions contributing star players with UCD (5) and NUIG (4) the dominant presence.
Kerry’s Jack Barry and Galway’s Damien Comer feature and were also busy this spring at senior inter-county level. Another name to watch is Andrew McGowan from Kilmacud Crokes and DIT who was part of the Dublin panel that beat Galway in this year’s Allianz football league final.
“Over the last number of years it has become a real statement of intent from young players involved at third level football and hurling championships that the form they show here is a sign of things to come at inter-county level,” said GAA president John Horan.
“Our thanks to Electric Ireland for their support and we look forward to watching these young heroes continue to develop their talents at club and county level.”
“We in Electric Ireland have been delighted to extend our GAA sponsorship portfolio this year to include the Higher Education Leagues and Championships,” added Jim Dollard, Executive Director of Electric Ireland.
“For those involved in sport at third level, representing their college is special and it is the Higher Education Leagues and Championships that provide this sporting opportunity.”
“Electric Ireland wished to bring to the fore through the First Class Rivals campaign, the unique aspect of the Championships which sees rivals at county level, coming together in college with one goal – to win the highly coveted Electric Ireland Fitzgibbon or Sigerson trophies. Through our campaign, we sought to raise the profile of these wonderful competitions, celebrate the meaning and the emotion attached to the games.”
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