Australian wheelchair rugby team up for award

“The Steelers” have been shortlisted for team of the year at the inaugural ASPAs which will be presented in February 2015. 03 Jan 2015
Men in wheelchairs with a big championships trophy

Australia with the trophy - 2014 IWRF Wheelchair Rugby World Championships

ⒸBrian Mouridsen

The Australian wheelchair rugby team has been named a finalist for in the inaugural Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) Sports Performance Awards (ASPAs) after winning the world title in 2014.

“The Steelers” have been shortlisted alongside the Australian netball team and the Australian men’s hockey team for the awards which will be presented at a ceremony and cocktail function in Melbourne, Australia, on 11 February 2015.

The ASPAs recognise Australia’s leading athletes, teams and coaches, and celebrate their outstanding achievements in high performance sport.

AIS Director Matt Favier said the awards reflected the new and expanded role the AIS plays in high performance sport.

“The old AIS Awards have been won by some great athletes but the timing is right to expand the pool of talent eligible to win some of the country’s most prestigious sports awards,” he said.

“The new ASPAs capture the flavour of what the AIS is now all about and the awards align with Australia’s Winning Edge plan which involves supporting more sports than ever before.

“We asked national sporting organisations (NSOs) to nominate athletes, coaches and leaders as well as community clubs and volunteers to ensure we are recognising all levels in Australian sport.

“It is very important that we publicly acknowledge the hard work and achievements of people involved in Australian performance sport.

“As always it was a difficult choice to come up with the finalists in each category and I congratulate everyone who made it through.

“There are a further two categories – Sport Performance of the Year and Sport Personality of the Year – which are people’s choice awards and I hope as many Australians as possible cast their votes in these two categories when the finalists are announced and voting opens in early January.”

To cast your vote go to the home page from 2 January.

All the finalists are as follows:

Athlete of the year – presented by Berlei

• Jess Fox (Canoeing)

• Stephanie Gilmore (Surfing)

• Mitchell Johnson (Cricket)

• Warren Potent (Shooting)

Coach of the year – presented by Melbourne Business School

• Myriam Fox (Canoeing)

• Lisa Alexander (Netball)

• Cord Spero (Aerial Skiing)

Junior athlete of the year – presented by Nestle

• Dante Exum (Basketball)

• Amy Cure (Cycling)

• Eleanor Patterson (Athletics - high jump)

Team of the year – presented by Gatorade

• Australian Netball team (The Diamonds)

• Australian Men’s Hockey team (The Kookaburras)

• Australian Wheelchair Rugby team (The Steelers)

Para Performance of the year – presented by Dairy Australia

• Australian Wheelchair Rugby team (The Steelers)

• Australian Wheelchair Basketball team (The Rollers)

Curtis McGrath (Para-canoeing)

Leader of the year – presented by Melbourne Business School

• Chris Symington (Surfing)

• Kate Palmer (Netball)

• Damien Marangon (Shooting)

Community Club of the year – presented by Beiersdorf and Club Warehouse

• McKinnon Basketball Association

• Wynyard Yacht Club

• Olinda Ferny Creek Football/Netball Club

Volunteer/Administrator of the year – presented by United Pacific Industries

• Bridie Galea (Basketball)

• John Rosser (Sailing)

• Percival John Kepple (Swimming)