THE finalists have been announced for this year’s ILT Southland Sports Awards.
Southlanders achieved outstanding feats at national and international level with finalists in 13 sporting codes, ranging from mountainbiking to motorbike racing.
Southland Amateur Sports Trust chairman Tom Pryde said the level of achievement made the judging process very difficult.
“These awards are amongst the longest-running sports awards in the country and every year the judging panel are in awe of the impact Southlanders have in sport on the national and world stage, and this year is no different.”
Sport Southland chief executive Brendon McDermott said the organisation hosted the annual awards on behalf of the Southland Amateur Sports Trust and had opted to create a virtual event this year.
“The ongoing ramifications of the pandemic, particularly the financial impact, is challenging everyone to think differently. In terms of this year’s awards, it’s really important the Southland community has that opportunity to reflect on great success across the board, but we are also mindful of doing so in a way that’s appropriate for these difficult times,” McDermott said.
“Creating a virtual event has also given us the opportunity to show some loyalty back to our sponsors who all have a long association with the awards.”
The category winners would be unveiled online on five nights at 7pm from June 29 on the Facebook page, along with the ILT and Sport Southland social media platforms and the Southland Times website.
“One of the positives of going virtual is that potentially a much larger audience will be able to take part in the awards this year by accessing it online,” McDermott said.
As well as the seven category winners, the story of the year category would be confirmed after a public vote, the Mike Piper Trophy for commitment and excellence amongst Academy Southland’s programme will be awarded and up to four services to sport honours would be presented.
ILT SENIOR SPORTSPERSON OF THE YEAR: Gina Crampton (netball), Patricia Hopcroft (touch), Nick Kergozou (cycling), Hannah Miller (athletics), Alena Saili (rugby), Corbin Strong (cycling).
VODAFONE JUNIOR SPORTSPERSON OF THE YEAR: Cormac Buchanan (motorcycle racing), Josh Burnett (mountainbiking), Quinn Hartley (athletics), Liam Hewitt (golf), Shakira Mirfin (rowing), Emily Paterson (cycling), Conor Shearing (cycling), Ella Smith (badminton).
SOUTHLAND KIA TEAM OF THE YEAR: Eastern Southland senior netball team (netball), Southland B rugby team (rugby), Southland elite men’s team sprint (cycling).
NZME MASTERS ACHIEVEMENT: Neil Familton (cycling), Dwight Grieve (athletics), Geertien Venter (cycling).
RICOH SOUTH COACH OF THE YEAR: Sid Cumming (cycling), Chris Knight (athletics), Chris Telfer (softball).
CREATION SIGNS OFFICIAL OF THE YEAR: Erin Criglington (cycling), Ian Densie (cycling),Yvonette Fox (swimming), Corina Ngatuere (netball), Karl McDonald (rugby).