CAPPING a memorable year covering the extended success of the Orange Netball Association, the Central Western Daily sports desk took home the Judy Dunbar Media Award for community media excellence.
On hand to accept the award at the Netball NSW State Dinner at the Anne Clark Centre on Saturday night, sports editor Michelle Cook and sports journalist Nick McGrath were both humbled to be recognised after being nominated by the ONA.
“Just to be nominated for an award was something special. To win was fantastic and unexpected,” Cook said.
“We’re lucky Orange has such a strong netball association and all the people involved are so willing to work with us.
“We have to thank ONA president Jacki Jasprizza for nominating us. It was very kind of her and it was great she was there on the night to celebrate the win with us.”
It’s been another stellar year for netball in Orange.
Robin Hood again edged out Life Studio 46-44 in a thrilling division one grand final while the ONA representative side finished third in the champions division of the Netball NSW state championship, bringing home the Pat Weston OAM Country Cup Champions title.
Embarking on another Central West State League campaign, Orange A again excelled to take out an 18th consecutive title this time with a 58-39 victory over Bathurst A.
Adding further to the trophy cabinet, Orange A then swept all before it at the newly formed Inter-Regional State League competition to take out the final in typically dominant fashion courtesy of a 69-39 win over Illawarra 15s.
The 2013 State Dinner was held on the courts of a transformed Anne Clark Centre, the home of Netball NSW for the past 34 years.
It was the final State Dinner before Netball NSW moves to its new centre of excellence in Sydney Olympic Park during 2014.
Other award winners of the night included Liz Ellis and Barbara Long as Netball NSW Hall of Fame Inductees. The undefeated 2006 Sydney Swifts side won a Netball NSW Special Recognition gong.
Other Judy Dunbar Media Award winners were Phil Hillyard (Daily Telegraph, best photo), Dominic Bossi (Sydney Morning Herald, best feature) and Carly Adno (Daily Telegraph, overall coverage).