Influential Avondale Fly-Half Silipa Tuigamala has taken out the IDRU Player of the Year Award, presented at the IDRU Grand Final Dinner & Presentations at the Master Builders Club on Wednesday night. The Dinner attended by representatives from all clubs and affiliates was a fitting celebration of another successful season of Rugby in the Illawarra.
Tuigamala took out the main prize, which was judged by IDRU Referees throughout the season on a three-two-one points basis per match, just ahead of runner up Jackson Watts from Shoalhaven who went home with three awards. As well as the runner up trophy Watts also won the Tops Points Scorer and Top Try Scorer awards.
In somewhat of a surprise Bowral Coach Gene Fairbanks was awarded the Coach of the Year as judged by his coaching peers for the second year in a row. In a vote by all the First Grade Coaches, John Maughan, who is to Referee Saturdays Second Grade Grand Final, between Vikings and Bowral, won Referee of the Year. Ethan McIntosh was announced as Referee of the First Grade match between Avondale and Vikings with David Gunning to control the Third Grade match between Shoalhaven and Vikings.
The Bowral club also featured in the Senior Volunteer of the Year Award when the very popular Mark Fruend took home the spoils. Junior Volunteer of the Year went to Emma Maddison from Shoalhaven.
The Representative Players of the Year went to Paul Tuala in the Senior Illawarriors, Corey Aylette for the Under 20’s and Melissa Fatu for the Women’s. Country Representative Players were recognised with awards to Senior Cockatoo Players Paul Tuala, Henry Yuill, Jesse Roche, Andy Rae, Andy Papworth, Leighton Cowley and Wayne Ngatai. Awards were also presented to Under 20 Players Corey Aylett and Keeran McCourt along with Country Women’s Corella Players Brenda Auelua, Jemima Henry, Melissa Fatu, and Sally Fuesaina.
The IDRU Team Trophies went to:
Minor Premiers – First Grade Avondale
Second Grade Camden
Third Grade Shoalhaven
Club Champions - Avondale
Halfway Cup - Avondale
John Hayne Interclub Shield - Avondale