The Taranaki Daily News Sportsperson of the Year awards will be held in New Plymouth on Friday, November 23. Today, we feature the nominees for the senior sportsman, junior sportsman, coach, and game official awards. The guest speaker for this year's awards night at the Plymouth International Hotel is former New Zealand representative hockey player Barry Maister.
COACH OF THE YEAR
Glenn Anderson (surf lifesaving)
The former champion surf lifesaver switched his focus to coaching with instant success. At the New Zealand surf lifesaving champs at Midway Beach, he produced eight national champions, as well as two silvers and fours bronzes. He coached the Taranaki Surf League team to a fourth consecutive title. At the Ocean Athletes under-14 nationals, Anderson's New Plymouth Old Boys club had their most successful event ever.
Colin Cooper (rugby)
Colin is head coach of the Taranaki senior rugby team competing in the NPC premier competition. He is held in high regard both at the professional level of the game and at grass roots level. Taranaki successfully defended the Ranfurly Shield six on occasions this year (seven defences in all counting the final game of 2011 against Hawke's Bay), before losing it to Waikato in the final defence of the season.
Leo Crowley (rugby)
Leo is assistant coach of the Taranaki senior rugby team competing in the NPC premier competition. Taranaki had a successful season, winning nine of their 13 first class games and making the premiership playoffs only to lose to Canterbury in extra time. Taranaki defended the Ranfurly Shield six times this year, before losing it to Waikato.
Karen Gillum-Green (athletics)
Karen coaches 23 athletes ranging in age from 13 to 60 years. An accomplished athlete herself, Karen also coached the New Plymouth Boys' High School cross-country team which competed at the world secondary schools' champs. Her leading athlete is Matthew Baxter, who is ranked No 1 men's 19 athlete for 3000m. Others coached by Karen who are members of the Athletics Taranaki development squad include Emily Roughan, Rhys Bishop and Zoe Hobbs.
Matt Lash (adventure racing)
Opunake High School teacher Matt Lash coached the school's Hillary Challenge team to a stunning win in the gruelling event in May. Opunake headed off a combined team from New Plymouth Boys' High-Girls' High to win the adventure challenge event at Tongariro Park. The annual five-day competition involves a series of outdoor adventure challenges including a two-day rogaine wilderness expedition and a multisport race on the final day.
Clive Telford (BMX)
Clive has been the New Zealand Mighty 11 test team coach for several years, with both the boys and girls' teams winning several times. At the transtasman event in Whangarei recently, the New Zealand girls' team dominated their Australian counterparts. Clive coaches the entire New Plymouth BMX Club on a regular basis for events such as the North island champs and the nationals.
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