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Saturday 10 December 2016

Winning or losing won't change my mind, says Paul O'Connell

AWARDS

Paul O'Connell with members of the Female Irish Rugby team Eimear Considine and Katie Fizherny
Paul O'Connell with members of the Female Irish Rugby team Eimear Considine and Katie Fizherny

RUGBY legend Paul O'Connell has scooped the Hibernia College IRUPA Players' Player of the Year award.

The Ireland captain has enjoyed a stellar season, earning his 100th international cap against Wales and leading Ireland to successive Six Nations titles in March.

This year's win is the first time since 2006 that the 35-year-old has take home the title. Since then O'Connell has secured a European title with Munster, three Six Nations titles and captained the 2009 British & Irish Lions.

Describing his win as "amazing", O'Connell said it's the hard times that leave their mark.

"Those times often stick out more but when you put it to me like that in terms of achievements, you kind of go, 'Crikey, it was actually a great period'."

He has hinted that he may retire after this year's World Cup but said last night "winning or losing won't affect my decision".

Meanwhile, the Irish Independent won a prestigious media award in New York last night for its weekly provincial rugby supplements.

It received an International News and Media Association (INMA) accolade for the 'Best Idea to Grow Single Copy Sales'.

Marketing director of INM Geoff Lyons said it was a "real honour" to see the company's work rewarded at international level.

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