CARLA ROWE THE REAL PLAYER OF THE YEAR.
Tomorrow night the Ladies Football TG4 All Star awards will be given out to the team of 2014 and then they will announce the PLAYER OF THE YEAR or as its called the players player of the year.
To my utter amazement not one Dublin player is nominated for the award even though they had such a brilliant season. Now that success might be the reason that no Dublin player made the final three nominees,because with so many Dubs having such a fantastic year, that possibly the votes were split between a number of them,so their success actually went against them.
So what does it take to be crowned Player Of The Year,well I’m going to give my opinion on what I believe are the attributes it takes to claim such a title and also based on that criteria who I believe is the 2014 outstanding player.
So here’s the points I believe should count when picking the player of the year, Consistency,Contribution to the team,Influence on games,Scoring contribution,Defensive contribution,Skill level,Vision and willingness to keep going right to the end no matter what the situation.
Based on the above criteria one player has in my opinion stood out above all others and that is Clann Mhuire and Dublin Senior Ladies Star CARLA ROWE.
Carla has been nothing short of phenomenal this year. She only moved up from Minor in 2014 and started the season playing in the halfback line during Dublin’s unbeaten run in the league.
During those early league games you could see the potential that was there. Strong in the tackle,pace to burn and an engine Ferrari would be proud of,she was the catalyst for many of Dublin’s counter attacks. For a player so young the level of consistency she showed throughout the league was unreal.
In the division one league final Carla again started in the halfback line and excelled against seasoned Cork players causing untold problems with her consistent turning over of the ball and incisive counter attacking. Carla’s skills are not just limited to running with the ball,she has an eye for a score as well and contributed to the score board throughout the season.
In the second half of the league final Carla was moved to her more natural position in the half-forward line and caused havoc and consternation for the Cork backs with panic enveloping their ranks every time she got onto the ball. Although Dublin lost narrowly for anyone in attendance that day the best player on show was Carla,but shockingly she was denied the player of the match award but a new Dublin star was born.
Carla took her fantastic form into the under twenty one campaign and ripped team after team apart getting better with each game and was an integral part of Dublin’s run to the U21 All Ireland Final. And what a final she had not only did she score 1-03 but the tackling,powerful running and over all influence on the game in which she must have covered every blade of grass on the Clane pitch helped to win not only Dublin the All Ireland Title but also won Carla player of the match.
The U21 campaign had only finished and Carla was back playing for the senior team in the Leinster Championship. She could have been forgiven for maybe feeling a little fatigued or for her high performance levels to drop a little but not a chance,the confidence gained from an All Ireland victory just did the opposite.
Now an integral member of the Dublin Senior attack Carla revelled in the space to run at opposition defences and got plenty of reward for her endeavours and title number two came in the shape of a Leinster title win a few weeks later.
For a player of her tender years she has the vision of a veteran and possess that rare commodity that a lot of forwards can lack and that’s unselfishness. Rather than just shooting on sight Carla will always try to pick out a teammate in the best position to get a score. One other thing she has shown all year is a willingness to do whatever it takes for the team not only in attack but also tracking back and helping out in defence.
Carla’s form continued right through to the All Ireland Final where once again she gave a performance to remember. I don’t think any other player covered as much ground on the day as Carla did (although a few of her teammates were very close) she literally ran herself into the ground. She was always an out ball for Dublin on the day and was involved in all that the dubs did well on the day.
Cork were so worried about her influence on proceedings that she was subjected to what could only be described as over robust tackling,twice needing attention from the physio. But even that couldn’t stop her as she just dusted herself off and got straight back at it.
Yet again Carla was shockingly over looked for player of the match even though it was plain to everyone there who deserved it.
So Carla may not have gotten a nomination for player of the year but anyone who knows anything about the game or has seen her in action this year will know there is only really one candidate for the accolade and that’s Dublin Senior Ladies Football Star CARLA ROWE.
Now don’t get me wrong the three nominees,Angela Walsh(Cork),Sinead Burke(Galway) and Caroline O’Hanlon(Armagh) had good seasons but none of them in my opinion ticked all the boxes consistently over the whole of the year to be picked ahead of Carla.
So CARLA stand up and take a bow we know your the best. -Nigel