Blyde receives top honour at 2018 Taranaki Sports Awards
Friday 24 November 2018
Rugby Seven super star Michaela Blyde has just become the tenth woman to win the Silks Audit Sportsperson of the Year Award at the Taranaki Sports Awards.
Blyde, who was recently named the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Player of the Year 2018, grew up in Taranaki playing through the ranks of community Rugby. She has had an amazing year winning gold at the Commonwealth Games and taking out the World Cup for the Women’s Rugby Sevens.
She joins a celebrated list of woman athletes who have won the award of the last 53 years. The first being golfing star Glenys Taylor in 1970 through to the last woman to win the award in 2009 – surfing legend Paige Hareb.
Sport Taranaki CEO Howie Tamati said that Blyde faced some tough competition for the overall award, including All Black Beauden Barrett, Bodybuilder Farah Deobhakta and Commonwealth Games Bronze medallist Aidan Zittersteijn . The judges were unanimous in their decision with Blyde’s outstanding achievements over the last 12 months and the inspiration she provides to younger players.
Hosted by Sport Taranaki, the Taranaki Sports Awards 2018 were held at the Devon Hotel on Friday 24 November to recognise and celebrate outstanding achievements by Taranaki athletes, coaches and officials over the last year.
The Tenderlink Senior Sportman of the Year was taken out by Beauden Barrett and the Taranaki Representative Tennis Team won the Hassall Homes Senior Team Award with their Christie Cup and ADIDAS Cup wins.
In the junior section, Commonwealth Games Lawn Bowls Bronze medallist Aidan Zittersteijn won the TSSSA Junior Sportsman’s award and the Toshiba Junior Sportswoman was taken away for the second year by runner Hannah O’Connor. The Beach Volleyball duo Keegan Joe and David Jeffrey deservedly won the Timberco Junior Sports Team, with an amazing year of achievements which lead them to the Youth Olympics Games in Argentina.
The awards evening isn’t just about the achievements of the elite athletes. It is also a celebration of the immense work and commitment put into sport by volunteers, officials and coaches.
Boxing coach Jake Rapira, with the New Zealand team’s outstanding performance at the Commonwealth Games, won the WR Phillips Volkswagen Coach of the Year Award.
Local legends Jamie Sutherland (Yachting) and Adam Fraser (Surf Life Saving) walked away with the WR Phillips Mitsubishi Official of the Year Award and the IVHQ Volunteer of the Year Award respectively.
Four other local sports coordinators were honoured with Service Awards for their dedication to sports; Jenni Brewer, Antony Joe, Teri Tamati and Karen Gillum-Green.
Howie Tamati, CEO of Sport Taranaki offered his congratulations to all 2018 finalists and winners: “It’s fantastic to acknowledge all of our sporting stars who have performed on the big stage, whether that is regional, national or international. They have made their families, communities and province proud of what they have achieved.“
“The awards evening offers a great opportunity to honour the region’s top athletes alongside the many community volunteers who help make Taranaki local sports so strong.”
Thank you for celebrating excellence in Taranaki sport!
Taranaki Sports Awards 2018 Winners
WR Phillips Mitsubishi Game Official of the Year – Jamie Sutherland – Yachting
International Volunteer HQ Volunteer of the Year – Adam Fraser – Surf Life Saving
WR Phillips Volkswagen Coach of the Year – Jacob Rapira – Boxing
Clelands Construction Masters of the Year – Farah Deobhakta – Bodybuilding
TSSSA Junior Sportsman of the Year – Aidan Zittersteijn – Indoor & Outdoor Bowls
Toshiba Junior Sportswoman of the Year – Hannah O’Connor – Athletics
Timberco Junior Sports Team of the Year – Keegan Joe & David Jeffrey - Volleyball
Tenderlink Senior Sportsman of the Year – Beauden Barrett - Rugby
The Floatation Sanctuary Senior Sportswoman of the Year – Michaela Blyde – Rugby Sevens
Hassall Homes Senior Sports Team of the Year – Taranaki Representative Tennis Team
Sportsperson of the Year 2018 – Michaela Blyde – Rugby Sevens
Thank you to all of our sponsors!