Outstanding young Blenheim and Central RPC rower Tom Murray, a gold medallist in the New Zealand eight at the world under-23 championships this year, is among the nominees for the Westpac Emerging Talent award at the 51st Halberg Awards.
The full list of nominees was released yesterday, nominations coming from national sports organisations and an independent Voting Academy.
The Westpac Team of the Year and Halberg Disability Sport Foundation Disabled Sportsperson of the Year Award categories received the most nominations with 13 apiece. Five yachting teams, four rowing crews, a cycling team, the All Blacks, Black Sox and the New Zealand Breakers have been put forward for the team category.
Four blind bowlers, two parasailing crews, a para snowboarder, paracyclist, and four paraswimmers - including previous winner Sophie Pascoe - are nominated for the Disabled Sportsperson Award.
The Sportswoman of the Year Award will be hotly contested by eight nominees including Lauren Boyle, Lisa Carrington, Lydia Ko and Valerie Adams. Six athletes, including All Black Kieran Read and IndyCar driver Scott Dixon, have been nominated for the Sportsman of the Year category.
Nine nominations have been put forward in the Westpac Emerging Talent and Coach of the Year Award categories.
A voting academy of 30 former athletes, coaches and media representatives will vote to determine the finalists which are announced on January 1, 2014. Outstanding performances by individual athletes or teams are still considered until December 31, 2013.
The winners of the Sportsman, Sportswoman, Disabled Sportsperson and Team of the Year Award categories will be eligible for the country's supreme accolade for sporting excellence - the Halberg Award.
Award winners will be announced at Vector Arena, Auckland, on February 13. The event will be televised live on Sky Sport.
Other award categories that will be presented on the night include; New Zealand's Favourite Sporting Moment (finalists announced in January) the Sport New Zealand Leadership Award and inductees into the Sports Hall of Fame.
The full list of nominations for the 51st Westpac Halberg Awards:
High Performance Sport New Zealand Sportsman of the Year: Aaron Gate (Cycling), Andrew Nicholson (Equestrian), Kieran Read (Rugby), Mitch Evans (Motorsport), Scott Dixon (Motorsport), Simon van Velthooven (Cycling).
High Performance Sport New Zealand Sportswoman of the Year: Emma Twigg (Rowing), Lauren Boyle (Swimming), Linda Villumsen (Cycling), Lisa Carrington (Canoeing), Lydia Ko (Golf), Melissa Timperley (Taekwon-Do), Suzie Bates (Cricket), Valerie Adams (Athletics).
Halberg Disability Sport Foundation Disabled Sportsperson of the Year: Cameron Leslie (Para Swimming), Carl Murphy (Para-Snowboarding), David Monk (Blind Bowling), Emma Foy and Gabrielle Vermunt (pilot) (Para Cycling), James Dunn (Blind Bowling), Mary Fisher (Para Swimming), Mike Johnson (Para Shooting), Mixed Pairs - Sue Curran and James Dunn (Blind Bowling), Nikita Howarth (Para Swimming), Sophie Pascoe (Para Swimming), Sue Curran (Blind Bowling), Team New Zealand Class B2 (Para Sailing), Team New Zealand Class B3 (Para Sailing).
Westpac Team of the Year: All Blacks (Rugby), Black Sox (Softball), Emirates Team New Zealand (Yachting), Men's Pair - Hamish Bond and Eric Murray (Rowing), Men's Lightweight Four (Rowing), Men's Team Sprint (Cycling), NZL Sailing Team with ETNZ (Yachting), NZ Men's 49er Class Team - Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (Yaching), NZ Women's 49erFX Pair - Alexandra Maloney and Molly Meech (Yachting), NZ Women's 470 Team - Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie (Yachting), The New Zealand Breakers (Basketball), Women's Pair - Rebecca Scown and Kayla Pratt (Rowing), Women's Double Scull - Zoe Stevenson and Fiona Bourke (Rowing).
Westpac Emerging Talent: Ella Williams (Surfing), Gabrielle Fa'amausili (Swimming), Hannah Sarten (BMX), Jake Lewis (Motorcycling), Liam Aitcheson (Track Cycling), Makauley Fox (Baseball), Sam Gaze (Mountain Biking), Tim Robertson (Orienteering), Tom Murray (Rowing).
Coach of the Year: Dave Thompson (Rowing), Dick Tonks (Rowing), Eddie Kohlhase (Softball), Gary Hay (Rowing), Gordon Walker (Canoeing), Guy Wilson (Golf), Nathan Handley (Yachting), Simon Finnel (Cycling), Steve Hansen (Rugby).
- The Marlborough Express