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Ballinascreen Coach voted Translink Ulster GAA Coach of the Year

6th December 2017

Ashelene Groogan, a football coach at St Colm’s Ballinascreen has been named the Translink Ulster GAA Coach of the Year for 2017.  

The initiative, which is designed to recognise those club coaches who demonstrate exceptional commitment to the teaching and development of Gaelic games, saw over 5000 votes cast in an online poll to select the winner.  As part of her prize package, Ashelene will receive free coach transport for her team for 12 months, courtesy of Translink. 

Representing Derry, she was one of nine county finalists from across Ulster who made it through to the public vote.  Following a public call for nominations, a panel of experts including All-Ireland Champion and Armagh Football Manager Kieran McGeeney, Ulster GAA PRO Michael Geoghegan and Sports Correspondent, Neil Loughran, selected one person from each county to go through to the final stage, following which, Ashelene come out on top.

Presenting Ashelene with her prize at half time during the Ulster Club Football Final in the Athletic Grounds, Armagh, Sean Falls, Translink said:

“On behalf of Translink, I’d like to offer congratulations to each of our finalists and to Ashelene in particular, for what they have achieved. The shortlisting process was no easy task and each of our finalists would have been worthy of the title. 

“In its first year, the public response to this award has been exceptional and we’d like to thank everyone who got involved by nominating, supporting and voting for their club coaches as part of the process. The level of support is testament to the great work which coaches at all levels do in towns, villages and parishes across the province. 

“There could only be one winner though and Ashelene is very deserving of the honour. We look forward to joining with her and the teams she coaches throughout the year, as we help transport them to games during what we hope will be a very successful season!”

Michael Geoghegan, Ulster GAA PRO added:

"We were delighted with the number of public votes cast for the final phase of the new Translink Coach of the Year initiative.

“Our counties and clubs have shown strong support for each of the finalists, which is evidence of the outstanding contributions of our volunteer coaches across the province.

“I congratulate Ashelene on being voted the overall winner and wish her club many safe travels next season as they enjoy their free coach transport, courtesy of Translink''

The full list of county finalists in the Translink Ulster GAA Coach of the Year awards was:
•         Antrim - Kevin Gough, St. John’s GAC
•         Armagh - Anthony Farrell, Derrynoose St. Mochua’s            
•         Cavan - Brendan Connolly, Cavan Gaels
•         Derry - Ashelene Groogan, St Colm’s Ballinascreen
•         Donegal - Glen Campbell, St. Naul’s 
•         Down – Gerard Lenaghan, Aughlisnafin GAC            
•         Fermanagh - Eunan O'Flanagan, Devenish St, Mary’s 
•         Monaghan – Martin Burns, Killanny Geraldines GFC
•         Tyrone - Martin Curry, Eglish St. Patrick’s Camogie Club


For more information please contact Olivia Stewart / Annette Small at Morrow Communications on 028 9039 3837 or email. [email protected]


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