Six of the best as Offaly U-20 players are honoured
Six Offaly players have been selected among the top 20 players from this year’s EirGrid All-Ireland Under-20 Football Championship.
In addition, Offaly attacking ace Jack Bryant has been named as the 2021 EirGrid U20 Player of the Year. Bryant was a key figure in the Offaly attack throughout the championship, and the Shamrocks player the crucial goal in the All-Ireland final win over Roscommon.
As well as Bryant, the other five Offaly players included in the 'top 20' are Lee Pearson (Edenderry), John Furlong (Tullamore), Cathal Flynn (Ferbane), Cathal Donoghue (Kilcormac-Killoughey) and Cormac Egan (Tullamore). Donoghue was the official man of the match award recipient in the All-Ireland final.
Another deserving Offaly award winner is Declan Kelly, with the Kilclonfert man chosen as the EirGrid Manager of the Year.
Offaly memorably defeated Dublin in the Leinster final, before overcoming Munster champions Cork in the All-Ireland semi-final. The Faithful County went on to defeat Roscommon in a thriller All-Ireland decider at Croke Park on August 15.
The EirGrid awards recognise the outstanding effort and dedication of these talented young players, with all recipients chosen by the Gaelic Writers Association.
EirGrid has been a proud partner of the GAA since 2015 when it first began sponsoring the U21 All-Ireland FC before the competition evolved into the U20 grade. Offaly's previous All-Ireland success in the competition came in 1988 when they defeated Cavan in the final.
GAA President Larry McCarthy and EirGrid Chief Infrastructure Officer Michael Mahon have both congratulated all of this year's award recipients.
Mr Mahon said it was fitting that the EirGrid U20 Player of the Year and the EirGrid Manager of the Year hail from Offaly "given their remarkable journey this season". He added that both Jack Bryant and Declan Kelly were "instrumental in the county’s success this year".
All-Ireland finalists Roscommon have four players included in this year’s list with Colin Walsh, Patrick Gavin, Daire Cregg and James Fitzpatrick all making the top 20.
EirGrid U20 'Top 20'
Jack Bryant (Offaly) - Player of the Year
Tom Smyth (Down)
Charlie Smyth (Down)
Lee Pearson (Offaly)
John Furlong (Offaly)
Colin Walsh (Roscommon)
Patrick Gavin (Roscommon)
Diarmaid Phelan (Cork)
Ruairí Keane (Mayo)
Rory Dwyer (Dublin)
Cathal Flynn (Offaly)
Cathal Donoghue (Offaly)
Cormac Egan (Offaly)
Daire Cregg (Roscommon)
James Fitzpatrick (Roscommon)
Seán Jones (Monaghan)
Shealan Johnston (Down)
Jack Cahalane (Cork)
David Buckley (Cork)
Seán O'Connor (Tipperary)