A standing ovation was given to Denise O’Sullivan — who will be a key player when the Republic of Ireland resume World Cup qualifying duties in the months ahead — received the supreme award at a packed reception in the Rochestown Park Hotel yesterday, which was sponsored by Newbridge Silver.
Denise, who comes from Knocknaheeny, has been making waves as part of a Glasgow City side which has a Champions League quarter-final to look forward to next month against Paris St Germain.
She initially joined on a half-season contract in 2013, before taking the plunge at the start of last year and she hasn’t looked back, signing a new three-year deal with the club before Christmas.
In 29 starts, Denise has scored 20 goals, and this was despite operating as an attacking midfielder rather than an outright striker. Glasgow won the league, Scottish Cup, and league cup last year and Denise was the recipient of three player of the year awards — honoured by her coach as the coaches’ player of the year, honoured by the club’s fans as the fans’ player of the year, and finally by the rest of the players in the league as the players’ player of the year.
As an international, Denise scored the winning goal against Croatia last year in one of the World Cup qualifying games and is one of the side’s top scorers.
The Special Achievement Award winners were six Cork women who competed in the U19 European Soccer Championships in Norway.
Clare Shine, Ciara McNamara, Ciara O’Connell, Amy O’Connor, Megan Connolly, and Shannon Carson created history in a tough group beating Spain, England, and Sweden and reaching the semi-finals, where they were narrowly beaten by the tournament’s eventual winners, the Netherlands.
The Hall of Fame winner was Kitty Glavin of Donoughmore Basketball Club.
She was a founder member of the club and spent 25 years as a helper, chauffeur, washing the kit, coaching, but most of all was a friendly, motherly figure to the hundreds of girls that have played with Donoughmore.
She even uses some of her weekly pension to help fund activities within the club and, to this day, attends all games wherever they are.
Not alone is she responsible for developing great players, but she also helps turn them into great people.