2 May 2023
Hugh O'Sullivan has been nominated for the Premiership Rugby Community Player of the Season, presented by Funding Circle.
In his time with London Irish so far, O'Sullivan has assisted with delivering rugby-based fitness activities with the London Irish Foundation working on the Homeless BEAT Project, he then got involved with Project Rugby, with a particular focus on working with SEN groups in the area.
O'Sullivan also mentors the squad members of the London Irish Wild Geese as a coach.
Project Rugby is delivered in conjunction with partners Gallagher, title partner of Premiership Rugby, and the RFU and is designed to introduce as many people as possible to the benefits of rugby.
With a specific focus on engaging participants from traditionally underrepresented groups, no matter their background or ability, it facilitates sessions for anyone to try out the sport loved by so many.
Coaches and volunteers from Premiership Rugby Clubs and Club Foundations across the nation run sessions that are easily accessible within their local communities.
Hugh stated recently: ‘‘I want to give back and contribute to the community I now find myself living in.
"Coaching with the London Irish Foundation and the local amateur club is something I take great pride in.
"It is always nice to be able to pass on a bit of rugby knowledge, but more importantly it’s about ensuring the participants enjoy themselves and want to come back the following week.’’
The shortlist is as follows:
Will Muir – Bath Rugby
Joe Joyce – Bristol Bears
Hugh O’Sullivan – London Irish
Sean Maitland – Saracens
Among the seven-person judging panel was renowned journalist and BT Sport commentator Alastair Eykyn, who said:
“I know I speak on behalf of the entire judging panel when I say that all of the candidates considered for this shortlist are doing exceptionally important work in their local rugby communities and it was inspiring to read about some of the work going on up and down the country.
“The panel selected these four players, Joe, Sean, Will and Hugh, as they showed a sustained and regular commitment to helping others and their selfless work was clearly making a hugely positive impact on those involved with the community programmes at their clubs.”
The shortlist and winner was voted for by a panel of media professionals.
The judges were: Ali Eykyn (BT Sport), Sonja McLaughlan (BBC/BT Sport), Craig Swayne (The Good, The Bad & The Rugby), Tom Hamilton (ESPN), Hugh Godwin (i), Alex Lowe (The Times), Chris Jones (BBC 5 Live).
In the next few days, Premiership Rugby will also announce the shortlists for:
Director of Rugby of the Season, presented by London Pride
Breakthrough Player of the Season, presented by Defender
BT Sport Dream Team
Try of the Season, presented by The Famous Grouse
Premiership Rugby Top Try Scorer of the Season
Premiership Rugby Top Points Scorer of the Season
Gallagher Player of the Season