128 Nominees Across 55 Organisations and Codes - 2023 Canterbury Sport and Recreation Awards

The annual Canterbury Sport and Recreation Awards provide an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of our proud sporting and recreation community.

This year, 128 nominations have been received across 55 organisations and codes.

According to Sport Canterbury General Manager Participation Pathways, Jason Merrett, the Awards carry added significance this year due to the in-person event having been adapted over the past 3 years, due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Finally, being able to celebrate the efforts of our sporting community at Wigram Air Force Museum is a great return to the in-person connection that has been missed these past years.

“We are excited to be able to gather the sport and recreation community in one place again, to celebrate the achievement and commitment of our athletes, coaches, officials and recreation organisations.”

“Canterbury, as a region, continues to turn to sport and recreation as a source of connection, especially after time apart and challenges due to Covid-19” Merrett adds.

After adapted formats over the past few years, Sport Canterbury’s ability to deliver an event that focuses on celebration and bringing the community together again in person has been a priority.

From Merrett’s point of view, based on experience over the past few years, it’s about reconnecting and celebrating the resilience and adaptability of our community, as well as their achievements.

This year, an enormous amount of different sporting codes and community organisations have put forward nominations across the seven categories.  A big highlight of the evening will also be the moment two new Sporting Legends of Canterbury will be revealed”.

In 2023, the Canterbury Sport and Recreation Awards have seen a remarkable number of nominations, continuing the growth from last year. "The number and quality of nominations shows that our communities are keen to recognise the impact that our sporting and recreation community continues to have on the lives of Cantabrians year after year”, says Merrett.

After tough deliberation, today we are pleased to announce the following finalists in each category of the awards:

2023 Canterbury Sport and Recreation Awards Finalists

The MyHR Community Diversity and Inclusion Award

  • Sandy van Heyningen, Special Friends Trust
  • Kaye Nordstrom, TIMA
  • Nazea Silbery, Kaiawa Sports Incorporated
  • South Island Pacific Series Sports Association
  • Eve Mickell

The Crombie Lockwood Community Sport and Recreation Impact Award

  • Libby Hickford, Cricket
  • Tania Jones, Softball
  • Kia Kori Waitaha
  • Affinity Gymnastics Academy Incorporated
  • Trevor Ballard, Badminton

The Blackwells Mazda Officials of the Year Award

  • Tom Hogg, Lawn Bowls
  • Christine Cassin, Swimming
  • Gareth Greenfield, Hockey
  • Brian Theobald, Athletics
  • Craig Todd, Surf Lifesaving

The University of Canterbury Coaches of the Year Award

  • Juan Chang, Football
  • Jason Koster, Judo
  • Terry Lomax, Athletics
  • Sam Ryburn, Volleyball
  • James Schroder, Powerlifting

The Lincoln University Outstanding Youth in Sport Award

  • Taylah Holdem & Rosa Vesty, Volleyball
  • Paris Chin, Rhythmic Gymnastics
  • Kazuma Kobori, Golf
  • Gabriella Smith, Swimming
  • Jonah Cropp, Athletics

The Anstice Optometrists Para Athletes of the Year Award

  • Sarah James, Athletics
  • Sophie Pascoe, Swimming
  • Scott Martlew, Canoe Racing
  • Gabriella Smith, Swimming
  • Lili-Fox Mason, Swimming

The Craigs Investment Partners Athletes of the Year Award

  • Kendra Cocksedge, Rugby Union
  • Tom Walsh, Athletics
  • Hamish Kerr, Athletics
  • Tim Price, Equestrian
  • Bronwyn Dibb, Trampoline

Please note that the Christchurch City Council 2023 Canterbury Sport and Recreation Awards Supreme Award winner and the Orix New Zealand Sporting Legends of Canterbury Award will be presented on the night.

To join the celebration and hear the winners, join us at the Wigram Air Force Museum on Friday the 28th of April, 2023. To purchase tickets, please click here.

Article added: Tuesday 28 March 2023