Catalans Dragons’ Michael McIlorum picks up individual awards

2022 was not the season Catalans Dragons wanted it to be.

Under Steve McNamara, the French side have enjoyed an impressive progression from nearly being relegated in 2017, to winning the Challenge Cup in 2018 and the top four in 2020 and the semi-finals before in 2021 the Dragons made history.

They finished top for the first time on the back of an outstanding campaign before the French side made their Grand Final debut where they were unlucky to lose to Champions St Helens 12-10 in a terrific Grand Final.

The French side then added a number of exciting signings like Tyrone May which had many tipping them to go one better in 2022 and it started relatively well but injuries saw their season stall.

They ended up just about scrapping into fourth position before a play-off defeat to Leeds ended their hopes of returning to the Grand Final and winning a first Super League title becoming only the fifth team to do so.

Now they will have to wait for 2023 to have another crack at glory, but that’s not to say the Dragons haven’t had any positives this season with the likes of Fouad Yaha shining throughout the season.

However, the Dragons’ player of the year went to former Wigan nine Michael McIlorum. A candidate for the number nine shirt for England having played the Combined Nations game there, McIlorum has had one of his best seasons in 2022 and has been one of the league’s best nines this term despite there being plenty of superb hookers this year.

The Dragons number nine’s season didn’t quite end the way he wanted it to as he was one of three players to pick up a card in Catalans’ play-off defeat to Leeds being sent to the sin bin for a high tackle.

However, he has still been recognised for a great season.

He picked up the Players’ Player of the Year as well as the Player of Year outright.

Meanwhile Melbourne bound Joe Chan won Rookie of the Year, Yaha picked up top try scorer and try of the year as skipper Ben Garcia ended the year as top tackler.

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Lee Thewlis
Lee Thewlis
17 days ago

Grub of the year award?