Chantelle has had an extremely successful year placing in a number of fixtures including 1st place at the Muriwai Women’s Open and 2nd place at the Bay of Plenty Open Championships, among others. Chantelle is currently ranked number 1 on the New Zealand Golf Order of Merit and her current World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) is 67.
Football’s Daniel Wright picked up the Coach of the Year award for his impressive coaching record, coaching a number of teams including the Senior Men’s team and the College Boys’ team. Daniel is a great role model for the college boys team and encourages success to all players regardless of skill level.
Sport Waikato’s Waikato District Coordinator Fiona Devonshire was very pleased with the high caliber of nominations, finalists and winners this year.
“We have had an amazing spread of talent across all categories this year, and it’s great to see the hard work and determination from all our sportspeople really paying off. And those sportspeople could not do what they do without the fantastic support of the many talented coaches, administrators, officials and supporters,” Devonshire said.
Eligible winners and judge’s recommendations are now considered for the Brian Perry Waikato Regional Sports Awards on Thursday 1st February 2018 at Claudelands Conference and Event Centre, Hamilton.

2017 winners:

Service to Sport:  Yvonne Ennion, Tim Foy, Kevin Lynch, Margaret Plane
Coach of the Year: Daniel Wright
Team of the Year: Waiterimu Ladies Golf Team
Official of the Year: Wirihana (WIDS) Wilson
Junior Sportswoman: Brie Bennett
Junior Sportsman: Kora Cooper
Sportsperson of the Year: Chantelle Cassidy
Club of the Year: Taniwharau Rugby League Club
Sporting Personality of the Year: Matekohi (Mutz) Morgan
Secondary School Contribution to Sport: Hiraina Robust
The North Waikato Secondary School Sporting Shield: Ngaruawahia High School
For further information, contact:

Sport Waikato Waikato District Coordinator Fiona Devonshire
027 292 6329 or email

Summary of winners:

Team of the Year: Waiterimu Ladies Golf Team
The Waiterimu Golf Club has a very small ladies’ membership with only six regular ladies playing club day on Tuesdays. The Waiterimu Ladies Golf team was made up of four of these members - Pettina Northcott, Eileen Bateup, Rebecca Fulton and the late Elaine Wilson. Their commitment to the club and each other resulted in the team winning firstly the Waikato Region Teams event which consisted of 19 teams from around the Waikato region, furthermore the team went on to win the New Zealand Golf 2017 Women’s National Teams Championship title ahead of a field of 14 teams from all over NZ. The team won with a score of 20 under course rating.
Sportsperson of the Year: Chantelle Cassidy – Golf
Chantelle is a member of the Riverside Golf Club and is a very committed golfer who is very consistent across her game. In 2017 Chantelle has placed in a number of fixture as part of the Charles Tour, including 1st place at the Muriwai Women’s Open, 2nd place at the Bay of Plenty Open Championships, 4th place at the Akarana Women’s Open and the Tauranga Carrus Open.  Chantelle has also had success at the NZ Women’s Amateur Championships as 2nd top qualifier, and sits as Waikato Number 1 recording 5 wins, 1 half and 1 loss at the NZ Women’s TORO Inter-Provincial Championships. Furthermore, Chantelle is currently ranked number 1 on the New Zealand Golf Order of Merit and her current World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) is 67. What an impressive year it’s been for Chantelle Cassidy.
Secondary Student Contribution to Sport: Hiraina Robust – Huntly College
Hiraina’s contribution to the Huntly College sporting community has been second to none. She is not only an outstanding sportsperson but a committed, hardworking community member. Her contribution to her school community includes; coach of the Year 9/10 netball team, co-coach of the Huntly College Softball team, basketball bench official, member of the Huntly Softball team, captain of the girls’ basketball team who were runners up in the North Waikato Secondary Schools module. Hiraina’s outstanding softball skills saw her gain selection into the Waikato Softball Under 17’s Girls Team, and at the NZ Softball nationals Hiraina had the 2nd top batting average of .579 in New Zealand. Hiraina is held in high regard amongst her peers as a leader with push and determination, striving to be the best at everything she does. With an eye for detail, Hiraina often makes sacrifices for the sake of the team first.
Official of the Year: Wirihana (WIDS) Wilson – Netball
Wirihana - affectionately known as Wids - has achieved remarkable success this year as an umpire. He was awarded his Netball New Zealand B badge and is a member of the Waikato-Bay of Plenty Netball Zone – Level 2 High Performance Umpires Squad. Wids shared the award for the 2017 Eastern Waikato Netball Centre Umpire of the Year and is a NZ Secondary Schools Umpire as well as being assigned the Open Grade Final at the national tournament this year.  Wids is the highest ranking umpire at the Eastern Waikato Netball Centre, a Centre coach assessor, a representative umpire and a NZ Under 17’s nationals umpire. A very driven, determined and passionate umpire who gifts his knowledge and service to the netball fraternity. It is a pleasure to see Wids achieve his goals through his hard work and determination whilst always remaining humble. 
Coach of the Year: Daniel Wright - Football
A dedicated and passionate coach, Daniel holds many coaching roles with the Huntly Thistle AFC Club. This season saw him coach the 2017 Senior Men’s team, 2017 College Boys team, the 2017 11th Grade Spartans team and furthermore was a mentor to the successful 2017 Senior Ladies Coach. Daniel stepped up to rebuild the Senior Men’s team after losing several key players from the 2016 division winning team. He managed to recruit players from around the region and created a great transition pathway from college boys into the senior men’s team. Daniel is a great role model for the college boys team and encourages success to all players regardless of skill level. He spends time with each of the players and helps them develop the necessary skills to become a successful player. Daniel inspires all those he coaches and builds confident skilled players both on and off the field.   
Club of the Year: Taniwharau Rugby League Club
In its 74th year, Taniwharau Rugby League Club continues to go from strength to strength in all facets of a sport club, from the behind the scenes organisation with a dedicated and driven executive committee and subsidiary committees alike to the many volunteers who are part of the club driving coaching, managing, fundraising and helping on the bar, to the many successful teams out on the fields. This year the club achieved considerable success on the field with all three senior teams (the under 17’s, the premier reserves and the premier team) winning their respective Waikato Rugby League competitions. Additionally, Taniwharau is the largest club in the Waikato rugby league district, with 13 schoolboy teams, two school girl teams, three senior teams.  The club also extends to netball with 4 teams competing in the Eastern Waikato Netball Centre competition.   Furthermore, in 2017, Taniwharau has produced several Waikato, Waikato Maori, NZ Maori and NZ Residents representative players who have gone on to represent their whanau, club, hapu and iwi with pride. Taniwharau is not your ordinary sports club, it is a way of life for many whaanau in this community.
Junior Sportswoman of the Year: Brie Bennett - Surfing
  • 2017 National Surfing Championships Under 14 Girls Winner
  • 1st overall in the 2017 Billabong Grom Series
  • 1st in the Rip Curl Grom Search
  • 1st Backdoor Bay Bash for under 14 and 3rd for under 16
  • 3rd in the Secondary Schools Champs U18 Division
  • Waikato rep at the Scholastic Champs
  • Ranked 1st  in NZ on the Surfing NZ Grom Series circuit
For Brie’s first year in competition, she has had an extremely successful year. She puts 100% effort into her surfing and is so dedicated to her sport, no matter what the weather or waves throw at her. She is a confident, determined, focussed and humble person. A real asset to our school and genuine role model to younger students. 
Junior Sportsman of the Year: Kora Cooper – Surfing
  • NZ National Surf Champs 2017, 1st place u14 boys
  • Aotearoa Maori Surf Champs – 2nd place u16 boys
  • Billabong Grom Series Whangamata – 1st place u14 boys
  • Rip Curl Grom Search Taranaki – 1st place u14 boys
  • Backdoor Grom bash Raglan – 1st place u14 boys
  • Ranked 1st  in NZ on the Surfing NZ Grom Series circuit
Kora has had an extremely successful year on the surfing circuit winning many titles but more notably taking out the U14 Boys NZ National Surf champs. He is an extremely talented young athlete and is definitely a name to look out for in the future. It is a pleasure to see Kora’s successful achievements given his young age. 
Service to Sport: Yvonne Ennion – Badminton
Yvonne is a Life Member of the Horsham Downs Badminton Club and has been a member since the early 1970’s. Yvonne has served in all areas of the club including junior club coach and convenor for 35 years, and a member on the management committee for over 40 years holding many different roles. Yvonne is currently in her 2nd year as Club President. Furthermore, Yvonne also served on the Waikato Badminton Association Management Committee and has also worked with many children of refugee families living in the Waikato encouraging them to play badminton.  A strong player, Yvonne has played in the interclub competition every year for over 40 years and in the Waikato Badminton Association representative Masters and Veterans teams for the last 20 years.
Yvonne’s passion for all things Badminton and her friendly sharing spirit has meant that she has helped many children and families enjoy and compete in the great sport of badminton. A wonderful and hardworking leader in the Horsham Downs and Waikato Badminton Community.
Service to Sport: Tim Foy – Various Sports
Tim has been involved with school and community sport in Huntly for over 30 years. Tim has served in all areas of sport as a coach, manager, facilitator of overseas travel, fundraiser, officiator, driver, drycleaner and photographer. Weekend sport is a way of life for Tim irrespective of whatever else is on. Tim is a very dedicated, passionate, loyal follower of all Huntly sport. His contribution to sport in Huntly College and the wider community is second to none and he is valued by all he has been involved with. Tim recognises the worth of coaches and loves celebrating student success.
Service to Sport: Kevin Lynch - Football
Kevin is a life member of the Huntly Thistle AFC. During his 30 years of association with Huntly Thistle AFC, Kevin has actively supported all teams, served and continues to serve as groundsman, kitchen worker, cook and is currently an active committee member holding the role of club captain. A very loyal and passionate volunteer, supporting the teams through rain, hail & shine.  Kevin participates in the Summer 7 aside tournament as both a player and referee.
Service to Sport: Margaret Plane – Indoor Bowls
Margaret is a life member of the Gordonton Indoor Bowling Club.  Margaret’s service to sport spans over 40 years.  She has served as the secretary/treasurer of the Gordonton Indoor Bowls Club for 40years, as an umpire for over 25years, the secretary/treasurer of the Eastern Indoor Bowls Association for 38 years.  As a player Margaret has won numerous club championships, six Eastern titles and gained Waikato representative honours.  At 85 years of age, Margaret still runs the Gordonton Indoor Bowls club night.  A passionate, dedicated and remarkable volunteer who is very deserving of this award.

Women’s Golfer Chantelle Cassidy named as Sportsperson of the Year at the Waikato District Awards

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