Ballynure gearing up for new campaign

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BALLYNURE Old Boys FC players Johnny Robinson and Conor Graham picked up league honours recently.

Johnny, a central defender with the senior side, was named Ballymena Provincial and Intermediate League Premier Division Young Player of the Year, while promising striker Conor was the Belfast & East Antrim Under-16 League Player of the Year.

Both will continue with the ambitious local club this season, where they will be joined by newcomers Ronnie Burns and Stuart Galbraith both from Ballyclare Comrades, Gareth Curlett and Robert Houston both from Nortel, and goalkeepers Leigh Singleton (Newtownabbey FC) and John McCormick (Ballyclare North End).

Obviously manager Gary Burns, starting his second season in charge, has been busy during the summer break, and he will be joined in the dugout by Andy Forsythe - who has been recruited from Ballyclare Comrades.

At the recent presentation of awards Mark Curlett was a double winner with the senior side, being voted the Player of the Year while sharing the Players Player of the Year award with Mark Moore. Their top scorer was Terry Lyness.

Henry McWilliams’ 2nd XI winners were: Player of the Year, Davy Thompson; Players Player of the Year, Barry Cullen; Top scorer, Ryan Davey.

Youth XI winners: Player of the Year and Players Player of the Year, Alex Hagan, Top scorer, Conor Graham.

The Clubman of the Year award went to evergreen stalwart Stephen Taylor.

On the administrative side it is same again with Michael Graham, president; Willie Strange, chairman; Robert Reid, secretary and Andrea Strange, treasurer.

After a couple of seasons’ absence Angus Henry returns to take charge of what will be a youthful 2nd XI, and he will have Henry McWilliams alongside him in the dugout.

The opening friendly was played at The Cliff in Larne where Larne Tech OB ran out comprehensive 7-0 winners.

On Saturday, both ‘Nure teams will be in action at Millbrook against their Wellington Rec counterparts.