UCD's elite athletes honoured at Sports Awards

Posted May 20, 2016

  • McCaffrey (GAA) and van der Flier (rugby) win Sportsperson of the Year
  • UCD's eight Rio Olympians receive special recognition

All-Ireland winner Jack McCaffrey and Irish rugby international Josh van der Flier have been named joint Sportsperson of the Year at the UCD Sports Awards.

McCaffrey was a member of the Dublin team that won the 2015 All-Ireland final and captained UCD to their first Sigerson Cup in twenty years in February.

He was awarded GAA Gaelic Football Player of the Year and GAA/GPA Football All Star for his performances that brought Dublin its third title in five years.

Pictured top: Josh van der Flier, UCD Rugby and Jack McCaffrey, UCD GAA. Credit: Sportsfile.

UCD Rugby’s Van der Flier made his Ireland debut against eventual champions England in this year’s Six Nations Championship. He has 18 appearances and three tries for Leinster this season.

Van der Flier was named Young Player of the Year at the Irish Rugby Union Players Association Awards. He was also selected in the openside flanker position on the PRO12 Dream Team.


The awards also recognised the outstanding achievement of eight UCD athletes who will represent Ireland at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Ad Astra Sport Scholars Mark English (men’s 800m), Ciara Mageean (women’s 800m) and Ciara Everard (women’s 1500m) were present on the night to receive their accolades.

Pictured above (l-r): UCD Olympians Ciara Everard, Mark English and Ciara Mageean. Credit: Sportsfile.

They will be joined in Rio by Paul O’Donovan (rowing), Arthur Lanigan-O’Keeffe (pentathlon) and Shane O’Donoghue (men’s hockey).

Graduates Claire Lambe (women’s lightweight double sculls) and Kirk Shimmins (men’s hockey) complete UCD’s representation.


UCD Sports Awards 2016

Sportsperson of the Year: Jack McCaffrey (UCD GAA) and Josh van der Flier (UCD Rugby)
Special recognition: UCD’s Olympians (Mark English, Ciara Mageean, Ciara Everard, Paul O’Donovan, Arthur Lanigan-O’Keeffe, Shane O’Donoghue, Claire Lambe, Kirk Shimmins)
Elite Team of the Year: UCD Men’s Hockey
Elite Club of the Year: UCD Men’s Soccer Club (UCD AFC)
Varsity Team of the Year: UCD Women’s Volleyball
Varsity Club of the Year: UCD GAA
David O’Connor Memorial Medal: Jack Roche (Karate)
Dr Padraic Conway Memorial Medal: Ryan Wylie (UCD GAA)
Gerry Horkan Club Administrator of the Year: Alice O’Callaghan (UCD Ladies Rugby)

By: Jonny Baxter, digital journalist, UCD University Relations