Finalists Announced for 2021 Victorian Sport Awards

Published 25 April, 2022.

Finalists have been announced for the 2021 Victorian Sport Awards (VSAs), the night of nights for the Victorian sporting community where we recognise and celebrate the achievements of our home-grown sporting heroes.

Honouring those who have made an exceptional contribution to sport and active recreation in Victoria, this year’s Awards acknowledge individual and team athletes as well as coaches, administrators, volunteers and the initiatives that promoted participation from both metropolitan and regional areas during the 2021 calendar year.

Presented by the State Government of Victoria and Vicsport, this year’s VSAs will be held on Wednesday 15 June 2022, at CENTRPIECE at Melbourne Park, the newest venue within the Melbourne & Olympic Parks precinct.

Having been nominated by State Sporting Associations as well as teammates, club members, friends, family and/or the recipient’s local community, a total of 19 awards will be bestowed in addition to the most prestigious award of the night - the State Government Outstanding Contribution to Victorian Sport Award.

The quality and breadth of the nominations received for the VSAs makes selecting the finalists a difficult endeavour. To this end, 30 highly qualified Victorian sports people including Olympians, world-renowned athletes and State Sporting Association CEOs were invited to constitute the judging panels charged with selecting the finalists and winners across the 19 categories.

Judges included 12-time national hurdles champion Kyle Vander Kuyp OLY, Head of Female Cricket at Cricket Victoria Sharelle McMahon as well as CEOs from Proud2Play (Christine Granger), Netball Victoria (Rosie King), School Sport Victoria (Rayoni Nelson) and Bowls Victoria (Tony Sherwill).

Vicsport Chairman Ron Gauci says:

“Vicsport is delighted to recognise and celebrate the wonderful achievements of the sport and recreation community in what was another trying year for our industry.

“The volume and, in particular, the calibre of nominations this year were a wonderful reminder of the successes throughout our industry in 2021. The process of judging the finalists and winners is a challenging but rewarding one and I know we are all now looking forward to honouring them at the 2021 Victorian Sport Awards in June.”

The Hon. Ros Spence, Minister for Community Sport says:

“Congratulations to all the finalists, from Olympic Games competitors to the community teams, volunteers and coaches leading the way at grassroots level.

“It is fantastic to see these Victorians receive the recognition they deserve.”

Finalists in the 19 nominated categories of the 2021 Victorian Sport Awards are as follows:

Southern Cross Trophies Coach of the Year

  • John Hart – Gymnastics
  • Jeff Hopkins – Football
  • Alana Thomas – Rugby Union
  • Alois Rosario – Table Tennis

Gallagher Community Coach of the Year

  • Kim Dunstan – Calisthenics
  • Aidan Fitzgerald – Tennis
  • Shaylah House – Netball
  • Gary Lasky – Lawn Bowls

Sports Accounting Australia Official of the Year

  • Sandra David – Badminton
  • Sarah Davis – Athletics
  • Lucy Hatton – Motorsport
  • John Mills – Athletics

etrainu Community Official of the Year

  • Kaya Cook – Life Saving
  • Andrew Guerin – Rowing
  • Anita Hill – Netball
  • Wayne Hinton – Australian Rules Football

AFL SportsReady Young Team of the Year

  • Indoor Youth State Team – Archery Victoria
  • Senior Boys Tetrathlon Team – Pony Club Victoria
  • South Melbourne Seahorses Rescue & Resuscitation Team – Life Saving
  • Sub-Junior Showjumping Team – Pony Club Victoria

AED Authority Team of the Year

  • Melbourne City FC – Football
  • Melbourne Football Club – Australian Rules Football
  • Melbourne United – Basketball
  • Melbourne Victory FC – Football

My Sport Live Community Sporting Event of the Year

  • Barwon Respect Cup – Barwon Health/Netball Victoria
  • Head of the Schoolgirls Regatta – Rowing Victoria
  • NAIDOC Week Family Day – Footscray Hockey Club
  • Victoria Police & Emergency Services Games – Victoria Police Games Federation

Love the Game Community Sporting Club of the Year

  • Chadstone Calisthenics Club – Calisthenics
  • Fawkner Park Tennis Centre – Tennis
  • Footscray Hockey Club - Hockey
  • Melbourne Jets Junior Academy – Ice Hockey

GameDay Sports Administrator of the Year – Eunice Gill Award

  • Michaela Cook – Hockey Victoria
  • Tanya Gamble – Netball Victoria
  • Ayden Shaw – Disability Sport & Recreation
  • Gabriella Tobias – Tennis Victoria

Vicsport Sport Initiative of the Year

  • Para-Sport Challenge - GippSport
  • Sandbelt Bowls Region – Lawn Bowls
  • School Clinic and Come & Try Events – Footscray Hockey Club
  • Softball Batter Up School Roadshow – Softball Victoria

Bunnings Trade Local Government Initiative of the Year

  • Diversity, Inclusion and Participation Program – City of Boroondara
  • Melbourne City FC Partnership – City of Casey and City of Greater Dandenong
  • Mentone Athletic Club – City of Kingston
  • Club Development Workshop Series – Nillumbik Shire Council

VALO Volunteer of the Year

  • Bruce Astbury – Motorsport
  • Gen Dohrmann – Women Sport Australia
  • Rachael Rylance – Life Saving
  • Liz Tektonopoulos – Tennis

VicHealth Active Recreation Initiative of the Year

  • Pier to Pub and Mountain to Surf Events – Lorne Surf Life Saving Club
  • VICSWIM Summer Kidz Program – Aquatics & Recreation Victoria
  • Virtual Health and Wellness Programs – Blind Sports & Recreation Victoria
  • Women’s Introductory Golf Program – Shepparton Golf Club

Involve Masters Athlete of the Year

  • Alana Baldi – Athletics
  • Samantha Barrow – Life Saving
  • Glenn Busby – Tennis
  • Jason Lees – Wheelchair Rugby

Global Wellness Tracking Young Athlete of the Year

  • Nicholas Lum – Table Tennis
  • Jade Melbourne - Basketball
  • Col Pearse – Swimming
  • Oscar Piastri – Motorsport

View Melbourne Outstanding Media Coverage of Sport Award

  • COVID in Sport Podcast – My Sport Live
  • Jarrod Potter – Basketball Victoria
  • International Women’s Day Campaign – Netball Victoria
  • Women in Sport Action Photo Awards – Women Sport Australia

Polytan Peter Norman Inclusion Award

  • Maurice Gleeson OAM – Blind Sports & Recreation Victoria
  • Elizabeth Gosper OAM – Inclusive Sports Training
  • Ferntree Gully Tennis Club – Tennis
  • Proud2Play and Disability Sport & Recreation Partnership

Governor’s Award Victorian Male Athlete of the Year – Frank Wilkes Award

  • Dylan Alcott AO – Tennis
  • Josh Giddey – Basketball
  • Jock Landale – Basketball
  • Oscar Piastri – Motorsport

Governor’s Award Victorian Female Athlete of the Year – Kitty McEwan Award

  • Aoife Coughlan - Judo
  • Alexandra Kiroi-Bogatyreva – Rhythmic Gymnastics
  • Elizabeth Watson – Netball
  • Emily Whitehead – Artistic Gymnastics

Read more about the achievements of all finalists here.

Event details:
Wednesday 15 June, 2022
6pm - 10pm
CENTREPIECE at Melbourne Park

Tickets are now on sale until 6 June.

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