A celebration of the area’s rich sporting potential was held recently in Craigavon Civic and Conference Centre.
The Southern Sports Partnership awards put the spotlight on competitors connected to the academy talent development programme delivered in conjunction with Netball Northern Ireland, Ulster Badminton and Ulster Hockey.
A commemorative medal was presented to each one of the 152 athletes present - with awards also delivered for Most Improved and Best Performer.
“I was delighted to attend and present some of the well-deserved awards on the night,” said Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, Councillor Darryn Causby. “It is fantastic to see so many young people committed to sport and dedicating so much of their time to developing their talents and striving to do the best that they can within their speciality.
“Thanks must go to the Southern Sports Partnership for the support they give to these young people – the future is very, very bright for these sporting stars.”
Caroline O’Hanlon, part of Northern Ireland’s Commonwealth Games netball panel, was special guest.
“This is an opportunity for the Southern Sports Partnership to showcase the depth of talent that exists within the partnership area in a wide range of sports,” said Southern Sports Partnership chairperson Gillian Dewart. “It is important that, as a partnership, we continue to strive to provide the best opportunities for young performers in our area so that they have the greatest opportunity to reach their dreams of becoming sporting stars in the future.”
Winners from the Armagh/Banbridge/Craigavon/Newry and Mourne squads were: boys’ hockey - Best Performer: Charlie Logan; Most Improved: Finlay Marney. girls’ hockey - Best Performer: Katie McCreanor; Most Improved: Anna Jennings. netball - Best Performer: Gemma Hassan; Most Improved: Holly Mulholland. badminton - Best Performer: Reuben Taylor; Most Improved: Katie Pollock.