Ursula Jacob collected her Irish Times/Irish Sports Council Woman in Sport award for the month of Septmber on December 20th while the overall award of Irish Times Sportswoman of the Year went to Katie Taylor (for the third time – she previously won in 2007 and 2008) following a wonderful year that culminated in winning a gold medal at the London Olympics.
Jacob was amongst a distinguished gathering of sportswomen who collected their awards at a gala lunch this afternoon in the Shelbourne Hotel. The 2012 All Star led her side to a third All Ireland in a row, hitting 2-7 in a wonderful display in this year's All Ireland Final against Cork. The full list of award recipients are listed below.
Monthly awards (covering December 2011 to November 2012)
Fionnuala Britton (Athletics)
The Wicklow woman is rather fond of December, it would seem. She won our 2010 monthly award when she came fourth at the European Cross Country Championships; she was our December 2011 winner when she won the very same title, and having retained her crown earlier this month it’s safe to say she has a reasonable chance of being our December 2012 pick.
Jessica Kürten (Equestrian)
Kürten won her eighth monthly award since 2004 after triumphing at the Amsterdam Grand Prix, her first major victory in 12 months – and that was after losing her best horses following a dispute with their owner.
Fiona Coghlan (Rugby)
Coghlan, also a monthly winner in 2011, captained Ireland to their most successful Six Nations’ campaign yet, the team comfortably beating Wales, Italy and Scotland, and only losing by a point away to France before going down to reigning champions England in their Triple Crown match.
Audrey O’Flynn (Hockey)
Ireland came within one game of reaching London 2012, losing in the final of their qualifier to hosts Belgium, the Cork woman’s eight goals in five matches making her the tournament top scorer – and she played in the final with a broken jaw, sustained in Ireland’s pool game against Spain.
Katie Walsh (Horse racing)
She came oh so close to winning the English Grand National on Seabass, trained by her father Ted, but her third place finish made her the highest-placed female jockey in the history of the race.
Katie Taylor (Boxing)
Taylor won her fourth successive World Championship title in China in May, and after that, well, the year proved to be memorable enough.
Stephanie Meadow (Golf)
The 20-year-old from Jordanstown played a major part in the British and Irish team’s Curtis Cup triumph and went on to become the first Irish player to win the British Open Amateur title since 1985.
Annalise Murphy (Sailing)
Murphy had a dazzling start to her London 2012 campaign, winning the opening four races in the Laser Radial sailing class, before suffering the bitter disappointment of finishing fourth in the medal race.
At just 22, though, she’s only just begun.
Bethany Firth (Swimming)
The 16-year-old from Seaforde, Co Down, went into the Paralympics nursing a shoulder injury, but it didn’t stop her from winning gold in the S14 100m backstroke.
Ursula Jacob (Camogie)
Jacob has been one of camogie’s most prolific scorers in recent years, excelling again in the 2012 All-Ireland final when her tally of 2-7 for Wexford, in a marvellous final against Cork, helped her county to its first ever three-in-a-row.
Rena Buckley (Gaelic football)
The Cork captain led her county to All-Ireland victory against Kerry, their seventh title in eight years – and Buckley’s seventh medal too.
Sycerika McMahon (Swimming)
The 17-year-old from Portaferry won a bronze medal, narrowly missed out on another and set nine new Irish records at the European short course championships in France – and picked up eight titles at the Irish Championships.