Two Co. Tipperary players that were part of the historic Irish UEFA Regions Cup success in June 2011 are two of the three nominations named for the prestigious FAI International Junior Player of the Year Award for 2012.
These are Adrian Walsh (Carrick United) and Christopher Higgins (St. Michael’s AFC) who along with FAI Junior Cup winner’s Paul Murphy of Dublin’s Sheriff YC will be present this coming Sunday (3rd February) at RTE Studios in Donnybrook, Dublin for this annual award that is transmitted live on RTE 2.
Three Co. Tipperary players have won this prestigious Award to date. These are James Walsh (St. Michael’s) the only player to win it twice in 2004 and 2011. Cyril Conran (Clonmel Town) was the first Co. Tipperary player to win it in 1994 with Wayne Fitzgerald of Carrick United picking up the gong in 2010. Nominated in the past were Paul Breen (twice) and Michael ‘Foxy’ Grace.
Of the two Premier County players, the highly decorated Adrian Walsh has been a regular goalkeeper with the Irish Junior and Amateur set-up since 2006 and has won the FAI Junior Cup, Munster Senior and Junior Cups and numerous domestic honours in the Waterford and District League. Adrian also won Annerville Award for Soccer 2012.
On the other hand, defender Christopher Higgins, who moved from Bansha Celtic to St. Michael’s AFC after stepping down from a successful career as an Inter-County Gaelic footballer, is a complete novice.
Chris only made his debut for his country in March 2011. Since then he is a regular part of the Irish set-up. Along with St. Michael’s team-mates James Walsh and Paul Breen and Adrian Walsh he helped the Rep of Ireland take Silver in the UEFA Regions Cup in Portugal in 2011.
Tune in on Sunday 3 February at 8 pm to ‘RTE 2’, to see who will be the latest winner of the FAI International Junior Player of the Year.
We wish both Adrian and Christopher the best of luck.