Golfer Shane Lowry has been named as Offaly's Sports Achiever of the Decade.
The decision to award the popular Clara native this prestigious accolade was made by an independent adjudication panel appointed by Offaly Sports Partnership to consider nominations.
The adjudication panel of Matt Connor, Kevin Corrigan and Emma Jane Clarke of Sport Ireland deliberated at length on 15 various sports categories, and a shortlist of 52 sports people for the various sporting awards.
Following their deliberations, they then looked at all category winners and chose Lowry’s performances as the county’s outstanding sporting achievement for the decade.
A member of one of Offaly's best known GAA families, Lowry sprang to prominence in 2009 when he won the Irish Open in 2009 while still an amateur.
Since then he has firmly established himself as one of Europe's finest golfers. Currently ranked 42 in the world, his biggest career win to date is the 2015 WGC-Bridgestone Invitational in Ohio. This year's he finished in joint second place in the US Open.
Results from the other sporting categories will remain a guarded secret until presentations are made at a gala function in the Bridge House Hotel on Saturday, December 3.
Three sports volunteers were also chosen for recognition on the night in acknowledgement of the essential role that volunteerism plays in the county’s sporting culture. Ann Marie Guinan from Drumcullen Camogie Club was named Youth Volunteer of the Decade; Liam “Morley” Brereton of St Brigid’s Boxing Club, Edenderry was named as Volunteer of the Decade; and John Cronin from the Tullamore Harriers is to be recognised for a Lifetime’s Contribution to Sport.
All nominees on the shortlist have been invited to the gala function on December 3 as part of Offaly Sports Partnership’s tenth anniversary celebrations.
Athletics – Pauline Curley, Gordon Kennedy and James Nolan
Boxing – Lauren Hogan, Brian Kennedy and Gráinne Walsh
Camogie – Elaine Dermody, Michaela Morkan and Sheila Sullivan
Court Sports – David Hope (Handball), Susa Moran (Basketball) and Michael O Brien (Handball)
Gaelic Football – Ciaran Mc Manus, Niall Mc Namee and Karol Slattery
Golf – Billy Donlon, Stuart Grehan and Shane Lowry
Horse Sport – Darragh Kenny, Pat Smullen and Tom Malone
Hurling – Brian Carroll, Shane Dooley and Rory Hanniffy
Ladies Football – Emma Dalton, Mairead Daly and Lorraine Keena
Para Sport – Eoin Cleare, Lorraine Regan and Nicole Turner
Rugby – Peter Bracken, Aaron Deverell and Peter Dooley
Soccer – Iarfhlaith Davoren, Sylvia Gee and Seamus Kelly
Special Olympics – Damien Breslin, Dessie Gonoude and Patrick Moore
Water Sports – Alex Condron (Swimming), Peter Neale (Rowing) and Niamh Ní
Other Sports – William Buckley Junior (Pitch and Putt), Aiden Fogarty (Clay Pigeon
Shooting), Kevin Keyes (Motor Bike Racing), Cathal Mc Donald (Clay Pigeon Shooting), Francine Meehan (Cycling), Marie Triona Keating (Triathlon), Mary Daly (Triathlon) and Tracey Mc Grath (Pitch and Putt)