Every December, the best and brightest of New Zealand (NZ) Rugby get together to celebrate. Whatever the accomplishments individually, the NZ Rugby Awards is the best time to celebrate the sport, as a group.
For women and men, players and referees, coaches and administrators, they all sit back and acknowledge each other’s efforts. To highlight team’s and player’s performances, ones that took fans attention – such as the Crusaders winning back-to-back titles – as much as to honour the contribution of stakeholders and those ‘behind the scenes’ put in.
No matter if it is Auckland, or Monaco [for the World Rugby Awards] the setting is always a celebration for those present, alongside every single player’s across NZ Rugby. The award winners only demonstrate the norm, and some have performed to such higher standards, that it is easy to recognize.
NZ Rugby Awards 2018
The awards night is Thursday, December 13, to be held at the SkyCity Convention Center, Auckland.
NZR chief executive Steve Tew said 2018 had been a big year for rugby. “It’s been another special year with several victories providing us moments of pride and cause for celebration, and some great rugby moments that inspire us to always strive to be our best.
NEWS ? | The 2018 ASB Rugby Award nominations have been announced.
— New Zealand Rugby (@NZRugby) December 4, 2018
A full list of the nominees is detailed below-page, and while these awards celebrate the local talent, there has been a significant step-forward in Sport respecting the achievements of others, who do not reside locally.
As the season of ‘giving’ leads into Christmas, Ireland Rugby head coach Joe Schmidt has received an endorsement from his peers. The reigning World Rugby ‘Coach of the Year’ has been recognized by the Halberg Trust.
Joe Schmidt receives Coach of the Year endorsement
Once seen as the ‘exit door’ to any form of recognition, as the success of Schmidt has become unmissable, a change in attitude see’s the former Auckland Blues assistant coach nominated for coach of the year at the Halberg Trust annual awards.
— Stuff.co.nz Sport (@NZStuffSport) December 11, 2018
If anything, the maturity of the Halberg Trust panel’s judgment is a wonderful commendation for the coach. Being away from New Zealand for so long, the common misconception is that the NZ Rugby Awards are elitist. Whilst they are qualified by coaching within the NZ Rugby system, then the Halberg Awards can transcend those boundaries.
A brilliant nod of appreciation for a man who has been widely praised for his contribution to Irish Rugby – the call by Halberg Awards officials to allow his nomination is a huge nod of respect to Schmidt, and to his place [still] as a New Zealander on the International stage.
Below are the official nominees for the NZ Rugby Awards. The ASB Rugby Awards judging panel is: Graham Mourie, Matt Sexton, Mike Eagle, Dr Farah Palmer and Tony Johnson
2018 ASB NZ RUGBY AWARD Nominees;
– Kelly Brazier (Black Ferns Sevens), Chris Hala’ufia (St Peter’s College), and Richie Mo’unga (Crusaders)
– Glen Jackson (Bay of Plenty), Richard Kelly (Taranaki), and Rebecca Mahoney (Wairarapa Bush)
NEWS | Referee Rebecca Mahoney will make NZ rugby history in the #HeartlandChampionship this weekend.
— Mitre 10 Cup (@Mitre10Cup) September 11, 2018
– Irene Eruera-Taiapa (Horowhenua Kapiti), Steve Webling (Taranaki), and Kim Wheeler (King Country)
– Sam Darry (Canterbury), Tom Christie (Canterbury), Risaleaana Pouri-Lane (Tasman), and Kaleb Trask (Bay of Plenty)
– Craig Clare (Wanganui), Brett Ranga (Thames Valley), and Willie Wright (South Canterbury)
– TJ Faiane (Auckland), Luke Romano (Canterbury), and Fletcher Smith (Waikato)Fiao’o Faamausili Medal
– Kendra Cocksedge (Canterbury), Krysten Cottrell (Hawke’s Bay) , and Jackie Patea-Fereti (Wellington)
? Drum roll please…introducing your Fiao’o Faamausili Medal finalists: Kendra Cocksedge (Canterbury), Krysten Cottrell (Hawke’s Bay) and Jackie Patea-Fereti (Wellington).
Who will scoop the ? at the #ASBRugbyAwards?
— Black Ferns (@BlackFerns) December 5, 2018
– Alama Ieremia (Auckland), Kieran Kite (Canterbury Women), and Scott Robertson (Crusaders)
– Allan Bunting (Black Ferns Sevens), Steve Hansen (All Blacks), and Clark Laidlaw (All Blacks Sevens)
– Solomon Alaimalo (Chiefs), Richie Mo’unga (Crusaders), and Matt Todd (Crusaders)
– Sarah Goss (Ngati Kahungunu), Rieko Ioane (Ngapuhi / Te Whanau a Apanui), and Codie Taylor (Ngati Raukawa / Muaupoko)
?? REPRESENT! @Sgoss10 (Ngati Kahungunu) has been nominated for the Tom French Maori Player of the Year award at the #ASBRugbyAwards alongside Rieko Ioane and Codie Taylor. Good luck to Sarah at the ceremony on Thursday night!
— Black Ferns (@BlackFerns) December 11, 2018
Richard Crawshaw Memorial All Blacks Sevens Player of the Year
– Scott Curry (Bay of Plenty), Vilimoni Koroi (Otago), and Regan Ware (Bay of Plenty)Black Ferns Sevens Player of the Year
– Michaela Blyde (Bay of Plenty), Kelly Brazier (Bay of Plenty), and Sarah Goss (Manawatu)
New Zealand Rugby Women’s Player of the Year
– Kendra Cocksedge (Canterbury), Aroha Savage (Counties Manukau), and Selica Winiata (Manawatu)
– Kendra Cocksedge (Canterbury), Richie Mo’unga (Canterbury), Brodie Retallick (Hawke’s Bay), and Codie Taylor (Canterbury)
– Auckland, Crusaders and Thames Valley
– All Blacks, All Blacks Sevens and Black Ferns Sevens
Follow Last Word on Rugby on social media for the results of the 2018 NZ Rugby Awards, and next year in the 56th Halberg Awards will take place on Thursday, 21 February 2019 at Spark Arena, in Auckland.
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