There were tears, there were cheers and there were legends everywhere you looked. The 2019 Sportscover Clubbies Award reached their climax at a glittering awards ceremony in Sydney's Tattersalls Club yesterday.
From all across Australia, local heroes were recognised and rewarded for being the backbone of sport in this country, with a VIP guest list of sports leaders to present their awards.
And the winners were...
Blackall Magpies Senior Rugby League Club
In the midst of the drought-ravaged interior of western Queensland, the mighty Blackall Magpies have emerged as a miracle tonic for the day to day hardship – an oasis of hope, passion and inspiration for the declining populations 960kms west of Brisbane.
Exhibiting the heart and soul of grassroots footy the senior rugby league club has more than survived without a clubhouse, pokies or major sponsors. Last year they broke their own drought, winning the central west grand final, for the first time in 30 years.
Despite it being tough-going, the community-focused club has taken part in anti-ice campaigns and raised funds for breast cancer awareness and suicide prevention. There’s no doubt that Blackall loves its Magpies and so does Clubbies.
President Phil “Flop” Rooney said: “Footy has been a life saver out here. After spending the week on the farm having to shoot our own stock and wild animals continually, it is good to come into town on the weekend and catch up with my mates at the footy and forget the week.”
Honourable Mentions: Beyond Grappling, judo (ACT); Ned Flanders XI, cricket (QLD)
BEST USE OF MEDIA
Allstars Calisthenics Academy
Allstars Calisthenics Academy has taken a predominantly Victorian sport and transplanted it in Queensland with stunning results.
An innovative, high-energy social media campaign has lifted the sport’s profile in the north and increased the academy’s participation numbers.
Head coach Tarryn Short and volunteer communications manager, Bo Adams – both social media novices when they started – provide the sweat and inspiration behind the scenes.
In three years they’ve spun an Allstars buzz with a creative and engaging website, vlogs, photo quotes and a team app. With the emphasis on fun, family and positive body image, the duo is producing a lasting record of the academy’s progress.
Tarryn added: “It’s amazing to look back and see some of these young girls who are now young adults and have a record of how far they’ve come in three years.”
Honourable Mentions: Badminton Victoria; Michael Carruthers (NSW)