Kilkenny and Tyrone dominate player-of-the-year nominations

Kilkenny's scoring hero from the recent All-Ireland final Eddie Brennan and Tyrone's two-time All-Ireland-winning captain Brian Dooher top the list of nominees for the Vodafone GAA Player of the Year awards.

The announcement of the shortlist was made last night and notably, there are no previous winners of either the football or hurling award in the running for the 2008 gongs.

For the Hurler of the Year award, Brennan, who scored 2-4 in the Cats' hammering of Waterford, will face competition from his teammate Eoin Larkin and Deise star Eoin Kelly, who top-scored in the 2008 championship with 7-43.

Larkin was nominated for his first All Star award last week and all other nominees for the Player of the Year, in both codes, have already been selected as All Stars in recent seasons.

In the running to be named Footballer of the Year are Dooher, his Tyrone colleague Sean Cavanagh and Kerry ace Colm Cooper.

Cavanagh, named Ireland captain for the upcoming International Rules Series, turned in a man-of-the-match performance during Tyrone's recent All-Ireland final win over Kerry.

In the Young Hurler of the Year category, Cathal Naughton of Cork, Galway prodigy Joe Canning and Seamus Callinan of Tipperary have been deservedly shortlisted.

Meanwhile, All Star nominee Tommy Walsh from Kerry is in contention for the Young Footballer of the Year award.

However, Limerick attacker Ian Ryan, their hat-trick hero against Meath this summer, and Laois midfielder Johnny O'Loughlin are both hoping to give their respective counties their first ever Young Player of the Year award in the code.

The winners will be announced live on television at the Vodafone GAA All Stars banquet at Dublin's Citywest Hotel on Friday, October 17.

2008 VODAFONE GAA PLAYER OF THE YEAR NOMINEES:

Hurler of the Year:

Eddie Brennan (Kilkenny)

Eoin Kelly (Waterford)

Eoin Larkin (Kilkenny)

Young Hurler of the Year:

Cathal Naughton (Cork)

Joe Canning (Galway)

Seamus Callinan (Tipperary)

Footballer of the Year:

Brian Dooher (Tyrone)

Colm Cooper (Kerry)

Sean Cavanagh (Tyrone)

Young Footballer of the Year:

Ian Ryan (Limerick)

Johnny O'Loughlin (Laois)

Tommy Walsh (Kerry)

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