The Her Sport Awards aim to celebrate and recognise the amazing acheivements and success from the incredible role models across women’s sport in Ireland; encompassing athletes, coaches and volunteers. The Her Sport Athlete of the Year is powered by Braeburn Coffee. Braeburn Coffee is exclusively available at Applegreen – offering customers the best coffee experience on the road.
Hailing from Cork, Amy O’Connor etched her name into All-Ireland camogie history with a jaw-dropping 119-second hat-trick, delivering a sensational 3-7 performance in the final against Waterford this year.
The four-time O’Duffy Cup champion, who is also the captain of her county, showcased her exceptional talent and outstanding leadership during the season. Her remarkable contributions played a pivotal role in the Rebels’ triumph, marking the biggest winning margin in camogie a final since 1959.
O’Connor’s exploits earned a well-deserved nomination for Camogie Player of the Year. In addition, adding to her already illustrious collection, O’Connor clinched yet another All-Star, solidifying her status as one of the sport’s luminaries.
In what was a record breaking 2023 season, Portaferry’s Ciara Mageean left an indelible mark by shattering four Irish records. The stellar performance earned her the prestigious Athletics Ireland ‘Athlete of the Year’ award, shared with sprinter Rhasidat Adeleke.
At the World Athletics Championships, the City of Lisburn runner secured a brilliant fourth-place in the 1500m, simultaneously setting a new Irish record. Not one to rest on her laurels, Mageean broke her own record weeks later at the Diamond League final in Brussels, claiming a place on the podium with a remarkable time of 3:55:87.
Ciara Mageean’s exceptional year includes setting Irish records in the 800m (1:59.27), 1000m (2:31.06), and the Mile (4:14:58). Notably, her mile time smashed Sonia O’Sullivan’s long-standing Irish record.
Paralympic gold medalist, Ellen Keane, secures yet another Her Sport Athlete of the Year nomination following another brilliant season, inside and outside the pool.
In August, Keane clinched a silver medal in the 100 Breaststroke SB8 at the 2023 World Para Swimming Championships, with an impressive time of 1:21.43. Another World Championship medal but also securing another coveted spot for Ireland at the 2024 Paris Paralympic Games. The upcoming Games are poised to be the swansong for the Dublin woman as she aims to defend her title.
Beyond her sporting endeavours, Keane continues her phenomenal advocacy work, particularly in promoting visibility for those with limb differences. Notably, she authored a book titled ‘Perfectly Imperfect’, chronicling her personal journey from a self-conscious girl to a Paralympic gold medalist and evolving into a confident, inspiring, and successful woman.
2023 will go down in the history books for Irish soccer and Katie McCabe’s name will be plastered all over it. The Ireland captain achieved a significant milestone by becoming the first Irish woman ever to be nominated for the FIFA Ballon d’Or award in 2023.
During the summer, the Tallaght native led her country to an inaugural FIFA Women’s World Cup. As captain, McCabe not only steered the team but also made history by scoring the Girls In Green’s first-ever goal in the competition – a remarkable strike straight from a corner, also known as an Olympico. This outstanding goal earned her a nomination for one of the goals of the tournament. McCabe’s leadership continued to shine as Ireland topped their group, remaining unbeaten in the UEFA Nations League.
Her excellence extended to the club level with Arsenal, where she secured the Player of The Year accolade for the second time.
Just when you think Katie Taylor’s legendary status can’t get any bigger… 2023 certainly did that. This year delivered the long-awaited homecoming that the Taylor had dreamed of since her professional debut in 2016.
Facing the first setback of her career in May, Taylor experienced defeat against Chantelle Cameron in a sold-out 3Arena. However, the Bray icon rebounded in spectacular fashion, stunning the world with a vengeance… as she said ‘don’t doubt me.’
In what experts widely hailed as the ‘Fight of the Year,’ Taylor not only avenged her loss but also ascended to the remarkable status of a TWO-weight world champion, securing the light-welterweight titles.
Cavan golfer Leona Maguire will remember 2023 as the year she added a second LGPA tour win to her illustrious list of career achievements.
In June, she secured a decisive victory at the Meijer LPGA Classic in Belmont, Michigan, triumphing over American Lexi Thompson.
Maguire’s stellar performance continued just weeks later when she became the first Irish woman to break into golf’s top 10 world rankings. Maguire carried the momentum to the Solheim Cup where she showcased her prowess once again.
Amidst the Spanish sun in September, Maguire reaffirmed her status as one of Europe’s top performers, contributing significantly to the team’s success. Her standout performance, securing three crucial points, played a pivotal role in Europe’s retention of the triumphant title.
Lauded as a “generational talent” by Kerry’s co-manager Darragh Long, Louise Ní Mhuircheartaigh’s senior debut in 2008 marked the inception of a stellar career, consistently showcasing excellence for Kerry. 2023 proved no different.
At the All Star awards, Ní Mhuircheartaigh’s outstanding contributions earned her the prestigious Senior Player of the Year title. Her remarkable tally of 3-31 overall in the championship, including a stellar 1-7 in the final against Dublin, underscored her prowess on the field.
The Kerry powerhouse further solidified her status as a standout player by clinching her fourth All Star award. This accolade adds to her previous wins in 2012, 2013, and 2022.
A true leader on and off the field, Lucy Mulhall stands as a pivotal figure in the rise of Sevens Rugby in Ireland, having been there from the very beginning. In 2023, her unwavering dedication and sacrifice reached fruition as she captained the side to their historic first-ever Olympic qualification.
Mulhall’s impact extends beyond statistics, with an impressive tally of over 440 points for Ireland in the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series. What these numbers don’t capture is the never-say-die attitude she embodies, inspiring her teammates to reach greater heights.
The Wicklow star has been a stalwart at the top level for nearly a decade, overcoming the disappointments of missing out on Rio 2016 and Tokyo 2020. As she sets her sights on Paris 2024 next summer, Mulhall is poised to make her mark on the Olympic stage.
Siobhán McCrohan sent shockwaves through the rowing world with a stunning gold medal victory in the Lightweight Single-Sculls event at the 2023 Rowing World Championships in Belgrade.
Hailing from Claregalway, the 36-year-old made a remarkable return to international rowing after a seven-year hiatus. In an awe-inspiring performance, McCrohan powered down the course to not only secure victory but to do so convincingly. Crossing the finish line a boat-length clear of her closest rival, that was a statement victory.
A member of the Tribesman Rowing Club, McCrohan also won bronze at the World Cup III in Lucerne in July. At the age of 36, she stands as a newly crowned world champion, proving that age is no barrier to success in the world of rowing.
History unfolded at the European Weightlifting Championships in Armenia this year when Thammy Nguyen ascended the stage to claim a bronze medal in the 49kg division. Nguyden became the first Irish athlete, irrespective of gender, to win a senior weightlifting medal on the international stage.
Beyond her athletic prowess, Nguyen is a versatile individual—a thriving entrepreneur and devoted mother. At the 2023 World Weightlifting Championships, she notched a new chapter in Irish weightlifting history, setting a national record with a 76 kg snatch and a 96 kg jerk, culminating in a total of 172 kg and a 19th-place finish overall. Nguyen had already made history in 2015 as the first Irish woman to compete at the weightlifting World Championships.
Currently sitting in 20th position in the Olympic rankings, Nguyen nurtures the aspiration of qualifying for her inaugural Olympic Games in 2024.