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Canterbury and District Sports Awards 2014 winners

Congratulations to all the winners and nominees of this year’s awards!

Junior Sports Performer of the Year (sponsored by McDonalds Canterbury City Centre)

Winner: Abbie Wyver
Junior sports performer 2014

Abbie from the City of Canterbury Rhythmic Gymnastics club became the overall British Junior Champion and British Champion at all 4 individual disciplines earlier this year. Abbie was also selected for the GB Junior Rhythmic Gymnastics squad at the end of last year.

Nominee: Bobby Clay
Junior sports performer nominee 2014

Bobby is a middle distance athlete at Invicta Athletics club. Earlier this year she won the Junior Edinburgh International Cross Country and on the track at 1500m in the Diamond League in Switzerland, both for team GB. She has the UK’s fastest time for 3000m, 2nd fastest time at 1500m and 4th fastest time at 800m for her age group.

Nominee: Lizzie Neal
Junior sports performer nominee 2014

Lizzie was selected for the England Under 16 Hockey squad in January 2014 and made her debut playing for Canterbury Ladies 1st X1 in November last year at the age of 15. She played against Spain, Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands.

Senior Sports Performer of the Year (sponsored by University of Kent Sport)

Winner: Kwan Browne
Senior sports performer winner 2014

Kwan played for Trinidad and Tobago this summer at the Commonwealth Games stealing the limelight from many of the top hockey teams in the tournament. For his home club he took Canterbury to the national premier league final of the Indoor 5 a side and was selected by fellow players in the league as the best No 7 in the country.

Nominee: Grace Balsdon
Senior sports performer nominee 2014

Grace captained the Canterbury’s 1st XI team to 1st place in the National Premier League. As a result she was selected to join the full GB training squad and played in her international debut against the USA in February.

Nominee: Alicia Clifford
Senior sports performer nominee 2014

Alicia started sailing at Whitstable Yacht Club and when times permits still sails there. This year she came 3rd in the Youth Nacra 17 European Championships and the Dart 18 Youth National Champion and leading the rankings in the in the RYA winter series at the end of last year.

Disabled Sports Performer of the Year (sponsored by Herne Bay Mobility)

Winner: Millie Knight
Disabled sports performer winner 2014

Millie is a visually impaired athlete with the British Disabled Ski Team. She was the GB flag bearer for the Winter Paralympics in Sochi earlier this year at the age of 15. She was the youngest person ever to compete for Paralympics GB at the Winter Paralympic games where she finished 5th in both the slalom and the giant slalom.

Nominee: Helen Sole
Disabled sports performer nominee 2014

Helen was selected at the age of 46 to play for Great Britain in the 2014 World Championships in Poland in June. The women’s team played against teams from USA, Poland, Russia, Slovenia and Finland and Helen played a major role in all games being especially strong blocking at the net and serving.

Nominee: Robert Whale
Disabled sports performer nominee 2014

Rob started playing wheelchair basketball 18 months ago, since then he has gone from strength to strength. He played in the Under 19’s National Junior Championships for London against regional teams from across Great Britain and has just started playing in the national league for the London Titans.

Senior Club of the Year (sponsored by Broad Oak BMW)

Winner: Canterbury Ladies Hockey Club
Senior sports club winner 2014

The Ist XI were National Premier League winners and national indoor finalists. The over 35’s ladies team were National Champions for the third year in succession and the over 45’s were runners up in National Championship.

Nominee: Canterbury Rugby Club
Senior sports club nominee 2014
The club narrowly missed out on promotion to National League One at the end of last season, coming 4th in one of the country’s highest leagues. Two of the clubs players were part of Kent County Championship team who won in the final of the Bill Beaumont Cup at Twickenham.

Nominee: Pilgrims Netball Club
Senior sports club nominee 2014
The club moved up to the Kent County Netball League for the first time at the start of last season and managed to come third in their first year in the league, beating the league winners in the home fixture and only losing by 4 points in the away fixture.

Junior Club of the Year (sponsored by McDonalds Chestfield)

Winner: Canterbury Cricket Club
Canterbury Jr Cricket Club

The club continues to grow based on the development of their volunteer workforce. They have increased the overall number of teams by a third and added another girls team. The clubs coaches take time off work in the summer to coach and help develop Kwik Cricket in schools.

Nominee: Canterbury Rugby Club
Canterbury Jr Rugby Club
The club are the leading rugby club in East Kent, with successes across all year groups. At the end of the 2013/2014 season the club won the RFU President’s Award for Club Management and was runner up in the Community Engagement Awards. This was remarkable as no other rugby club in England was shortlisted in both categories.

Nominee: Canterbury Junior Hockey Club
Canterbury Jr Hockey Club
The club continues to inspire nearly 400 registered Juniors on a Sunday morning and have England players throughout the year groups. The club have a winning formula not only on the field but with how they engage so many parents and senior players.

Coach of the Year (sponsored by Canterbury Christ Church University)

Winner: Jen Wilson
Jen Wilson

Coached Canterbury Ladies 1st XI Hockey to win the National Premier Hockey League. This was the first time the side had won the league and was the only female coach in the league. She also coaches at weekends and during the school holidays for no financial reward and inspires the future players of the club.

Nominee: Aurelia Mattioli
Aurelia Mattioli
Before the Canterbury Gymnastics Club moved to a new facility in Wincheap in June which has been an ambition of Rae’s for a number of years, Rae was coaching for nearly 21 hours a week. She takes gymnasts around the south for competitions and to benefit from the superior equipment, all which she arranges.

Nominee: Darren Stevens
Darren Stevens
Darren has been coaching for 18 years and runs his own Fusion martial arts facility in Canterbury. He offers free classes in schools and goes above and beyond for his students and will regularly chauffeur those that wouldn’t be able to attend competitions without his support. He is patient and has time for every student.

 Community Award (sponsored by KM Group)

Winner: Kayleigh Weatherly
Kayleigh Weatherly
Kayleigh started the new Back To Netball programme at Herne Bay High in May this year having qualified as a Level 2 coach at the end of 2013. She supported 35 new ladies into the sport, helped them win silver at a Kent tournament and enable a team to play in the local league.

Nominee: Jonathan Marsh
Jonathan Marsh
Jonathan set up the Wheelchair rugby section at Canterbury Rugby club and organised the Canterbury Bike ride to raise funds for the new team. He attends every session lifting players into chairs, fixing equipment, organising the players and sourcing funding.

Nominee: Jacky MacDonald
Jacky MacDonald
Jacky has been running Parkrun since she started it 3 years ago. This year Jacky helped set up the Canterbury Parkrun at the University of Kent, saw the event hit 200 people taking part in a week, hit it’s 200th event and is about to start a Junior Parkrun in October for 4-14 year olds.

Unsung Hero (sponsored by McDonalds Sturry Road)

Winner: Margaret Ansted
Margaret Annstead
Margaret established the Canterbury and District Netball league back in 1977 as well as the more recent Monday night league. She has been on the committee in some format ever since. She’s also been involved in Harbledown Cricket club for a number of years where she makes teas and supports the team at away fixtures.

Nominee: Sally Hayes
Sally Hayes
Sally is the current Chairman of the Canterbury Ladies Hockey Club, she also arranges the sponsorship and is there every week doing match teas. She’s been on the committee at the club for 30 years and has held most positions, Chairman, Treasurer, Secretary, 1st XI Captain.

Nominee: Benita Palmer
Benita Palmer
Benita has been involved with Canterbury Crusaders for nearly 15 years, she is a national league referee and coached the Crusaders be undefeated at the end of the season. She organised the 50th year of the league celebrations, is the league secretary and is key to developing women’s basketball in the region.