Banbridge Hockey Club Coach, Mark Tumilty has been named Club Performance Coach of the Year at the 2017 Sport Northern Ireland Coaching, Officiating and Volunteering Awards.

Coach Tumilty, was also presented with the Senior Coach of the Year award at the Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Senior Sports Awards in recognition of the superb year he had with his 1st XI side and leading his team to victory.

Mark has coached his 1st XI side to victory in both the Irish Senior Cup, beating Monkstown 3-1 in the final and bringing the cup to Banbridge for the second time in three years and during the EY All Ireland Hockey League, where they lost only one of their 18 games.

In addition, the Club also competed in the Euro Hockey League, which is the highest level of club competition in Europe, with the Co. Down side reaching the last sixteen, defeating the Belgian and French teams to qualify.

Under Mark’s leadership and guidance, nine of his players have been capped at Senior International Level with the 1st XI Captain Eugene Magee representing Ireland at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

As well as a high performance coach in a club environment, Mark constantly keeps himself up to date with all the latest trends within the international hockey scene by interacting with other coaches on a regular basis, to engage, share knowledge and create innovative hockey practises to keep his players on their toes.

The Club Performance Coach of the Year award is given to coaches who have demonstrated high quality, player-centred coaching and who have experienced club success and recognition at national or international level. It was presented to Mark on Tuesday (7th November) by Simon Toole, Coaching Consultant at Sport Northern Ireland.

Roger Martin, President of Banbridge Hockey Club, said “Mark has been instrumental in producing a side that ended the season as double Irish Champions and competed at the highest level of Club hockey in Europe – EHL. The side have been complimented on their fast attacking style of which has resulted in a well-deserved success on the hockey pitch. Mark is an extremely dedicated coach, putting in many hours each week of coaching to ensure that the team have the best training opportunities provided”

Congratulating Mark on his award, Sport NI Chair George said:

“The Sport NI Coaching Awards are designed to highlight the outstanding coaching talent that exists across Northern Ireland, and celebrate the great work local coaches are doing. Coaches like Mark play a crucial role in helping to nurture sporting winners and help athletes and teams excel. The success enjoyed by Banbridge last season are evidence of the effectiveness of Mark’s coaching methods and motivational skills, and his ability to produce successful performances from both seasoned internationals and young players just entering the playing panel. On behalf of Sport NI, I would like to congratulate Mark on his award and wish him and his players success for the new season”

Pictured is Simon Toole (Sport NI), Alderman Gareth Wilson (Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon), Mark Tumilty (Head Coach of Banbridge HC Mens 1st XI), Edith Jamison (Chairperson of Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Sports Forum) and Roger Martin (President of Banbridge HC)