When a player from a losing team wins a Monthly Merit Award they must have done something special to gain the honour and so it is with the winner of our Quinn Building Products honour for September 2017.
Tyrone was unfortunate to lose the All-Ireland Ladies’ Intermediate Football Championship final to Tipperary, at Croke Park, but that was no fault of the Red Hands’ goalkeeper Shannon Lynch, as she played a stormer between the posts and couldn’t have been blamed for the one shot that beat her.
Castlederg girl Shannon brought off a string of super saves that prevented the losers of a heavier defeat. Not only that, she was also in fine form during the semi-final defeat of Sligo during September and it is a big question why the Health Worker did not feature among the three nominations for an Allstar award this year.
We hope that our Monthly Merit Award will go some way to making up for Shannon’s double disappointment.
“It does, indeed,” she said, “and it is great to see ladies’ football recognised in this way. It is very nice to see different codes in the GAA recognised and it definitely does ease my disappointment in losing the Al-Ireland final. This is my first individual award and that makes it a bit more special, of course.”
Shannon (25) has been eight years in the Tyrone senior team playing in goals but her club position with St Eugene’ s is midfield. “I prefer playing in goals with the county,” she reveals, “although playing in midfield gives you a different vision of the game.”
Now with her county gear packed away for this year, Shannon turns her attention back to club football.
“We have the Division Three league final coming up against Edendork and, naturally, we are hoping to win that and get promotion. We lost in the league and championship finals last season, by a point in each, so we don’t want to miss out again,” she stresses.
To get her September award, presented by Quinn’s Sales & Marketing Director Seamus McMahon, at Quinn’s Corner Donaghamore, Shannon beat off opposition from Slaughtneil football manager Mickey Moran who led the team to their fourth Derry SFC title and Fermanagh’s Sharon Murphy who netted a penalty 48 seconds from time to give her team a draw with Derry in the All-Ireland LJFC final, a reply they won.
Also for mention was Belfast Sarsfield’s hurler Kevin McKernan and Derry’s Emma Doherty who starred against Fermanagh in the drawn All-Ireland final.
As her award, the winner receives an engraved Belleek Living Vase, specially designed jewellery from Carlingford Design House and training gear from O’Neill’s International Sports. She will also get two tickets for the UGAAWA Presentation function in January.
September Merit Winner Shannon Lynch receives the UGAAWA award from (left) Seamus McMahon, Sales & Marketing Director Quinn Building Products and UGAAWA chairman John Martin. Picture: Jim Dunne.