18 Dec 2016
It's been quite a year for Annalise Murphy! For news reports around the world and here in UCD, it's been quite a week, as we've struggled to keep up with all the well deserved recognition Annalise has received.
Last night (Saturday) Annalise was named on the shortlist for RTE Sportsperson of the Year. Although not the eventual winner, it was indeed a great honour and certainly justified considering her achivements over the last four years since her heartbreak in London.
At the beginning of the month, Annalise was also honoured at the Person of the Year Awards and received Sportsperson of the Year award. She shared the award with the Cork boys UCD's Pal O'Donovan and brother Gary.
Annalise said she was thrilled to receive the award. "It's great for all the young sailors in the country to realise they can make it if they keep pursuing their dreams. I think the Rio Olympics has put sailing on the map and I've noticed a spike in the amount of people giving it a go."
However perhaps one of the greatest awards this week was to win the Irish Times, Sport Ireland Sportswoman of the Year 2016.
"It’s amazing, this time four years ago I had just finished fourth and it was the hardest day of my life, but I said I was going to come back and try to get a medal," she told The Irish Times. "So to actually go and do it, it’s incredible."
Tanaiste Frances Fitzgerald said: "Every woman here today is a role model and an inspiration. And I know they will continue to be role models, not just throughout their sporting careers, but afterwards, hammering home the message that activity is good.
"That team sports teach us to rely on others and be worthy of the reliance of others. That solo sports require a fierce continued dedication. That activity is its own reward. All of those things are important to women, and it is marvellous that The Irish Times has created such a simple, elegant way of celebrating success and sharing that success."
"This year has been a momentous one for Ireland’s sportswomen with the Olympics and Paralympics in particular showcasing the very best of Irish talent on the world stage, while performances in World and European championships and achievements in national events show that Irish athletes continue to achieve at the very highest level," said Sport Ireland CEO John Treacy.
"I would like to congratulate all of today’s award recipients and thank each one of you for being such fine ambassadors for both your sport and your country in 2016."
On the night, UCD's Ciara Mageean was also honoured as Ciara had been awarded Februarys Sportswoman of the Month for February.