Winners announced for 2023 Victorian Sport Awards

Presented by the State Government of Victoria and Vicsport on Wednesday 12 June 2024, this year’s VSAs was held in the Victory Room at Marvel Stadium where winners across 18 categories were announced.

Following nominations from State Sporting Associations as well as teammates, club members, friends, family and the recipient’s local community, an esteemed panel of 37 highly qualified Victorian sports people were charged with selecting both the finalists and winners.

These judges included four-time Olympian Steve Moneghetti AM OLY, Head of Female Cricket at Cricket Victoria Sharelle McMahon, COO of AusCycling Kate Palmer as well as CEOs from the Victorian Institute of Sport (Anne Marie Harrison), Tennis Victoria (Tamatha Harding), Softball Australia (Sarah Loh), Netball Victoria (Andrea Pearman), Bowls Victoria (Tony Sherwill) and Table Tennis Victoria (Andrew Weiss).

The most prestigious honour bestowed on the night, the Outstanding Contribution to Victorian Sport Award is presented to an individual in recognition of outstanding achievement in, or contribution to, sport in Victoria. This year’s recipient was Dr Peter Brukner OAM.

A medical doctor and specialist sports and exercise medicine physician, Peter has treated thousands of elite and community level athletes in a 50-year career that has included involvement with five Australian national teams (swimming, hockey, athletics, football and cricket) and two Olympic campaigns in 1996 and 200 as part of Athletics Australia.

He held the position of Team Doctor for Australia at the World University Games in 1983, 1985 and 1987, for the Australian Swim Team at the 1986 World Swimming Championships, Australian men’s hockey team (Kookaburras) from 1994-95, Australian men’s football team from 2007-10 including the 2010 FIFA World Cup and the Australian men’s cricket team between 2012-17 that included victory at the 2015 ICC World Cup. In the AFL, he was also the Consultant Club Doctor for the Melbourne Football Club during their 2021 Premiership.

Peter has also played a key role in the development of sports medicine as a medical specialty in Australia and founded the two largest clinics of their kind in this country through the Olympic Park Sports Medicine Centre and Imaging @ Olympic Park.

Vicsport Chair Ritchie Hinton says:

“The Victorian Sport Awards is such a special night because it allows us to recognise our grassroots heroes alongside those who have excelled at an elite level. This year was another great celebration of the best that our state sporting and active recreation industry has to offer and my congratulations to everyone who was honoured.

“It was also a privilege to acknowledge the achievements of Dr Peter Brukner whose outstanding service to sport over 50 years, from community level to the Olympics, has made a significant contribution to the development of safe sport and leading medical care in Australia.”

Minister for Community Sport Ros Spence took the chance to thank all those that contribute to what makes Victorian sport so great.

“The awards night celebrates the dedication and importance of our clubs, coaches, officials, administrators, and volunteers across the state - it’s fantastic to see these Victorian icons receive the recognition they deserve.

“These awards also provide us with the opportunity to celebrate unsung heroes like Dr Peter Brukner who are integral to the health and success of our sports at home and abroad.”

Winners in the 19 total categories of the 2023 Victorian Sport Awards are as follows:

Leasexpress Coach of the Year

  • Peter McNeil – Skiing

Gallagher Community Coach of the Year

  • Tina Keown – Tennis

Sports Accounting Australia Official of the Year

  • Clare Taylor – Short Track Speed Skating

etrainu Community Official of the Year

  • Russell Turner – Cricket

AFL SportsReady Young Team of the Year

  • Katie Jackson and Lucy Richardson – Rowing

AED Authority Team of the Year

  • Victorian State Women’s Side – Lawn Bowls

My Sport Live Community Sporting Event of the Year

  • Annual Primary Schools Twilight Tournament – Sale United Football Club

Love the Game Community Sporting Club of the Year

  • Burwood Cricket Club – Cricket

revolutioniseSPORT Victorian Sports Administrator of the Year – Eunice Gill Award

  • Jennifer McIntyre – Calisthenics Victoria

Bunnings Trade Local Government Initiative of the Year

  • The Home of Table Tennis – Latrobe City Council

VAILO Volunteer of the Year

  • Hayden Eastwood – Tennis

VicHealth Active Recreation Initiative of the Year

  • Positive Starts – Wyndham Netball Association

Involve Masters Athlete of the Year

  • Nadene Gole – Golf

rebel Young Athlete of the Year

  • Cameron Gatt – BMX

Sports Excellence Scholarship Fund Outstanding Media Coverage of Sport Award

  • Bowls Victoria - Lawn Bowls

Polytan Peter Norman Inclusion Award

  • First Nations Calisthenics Club - Calisthenics

Frank Wilkes Award

  • Scotty James - Snowboarding

Kitty McEwan Award

  • Jakara Anthony - Mogul Skiing

Victorian State Government Outstanding Contribution to Victorian Sport

  • Dr Peter Brukner OAM

More details on the winners can be found here.

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