Curtis McGrath honoured at 2021 QSport Awards

Queensland born and bred or based sportswomen have dominated the Queensland Sport Awards for 2021 presented at tonight’s Awards / Hall of Fame Presentation in Brisbane.

The 26th annual Awards, held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre after a two-year break following cancellation last year due to COVID-19 impacts on winter sporting competitions, saw females winning four of the five major awards for individual athletes and teams, with a first ever joint win in the top individual award in The Courier Mail Channel Seven Queensland Sport Star of the Year Award since the current Awards program’s inception in 1995.

World No.1 women’s tennis star Ash Barty and the Tokyo Olympics top female athlete in champion freestyle swimmer Emma McKeon were not split by the Award selection panel, acknowledging the rare occurence when a major sporting Grand Slam winner shares the spotlight with an equally impressive effort from a record equalling, multiple gold medal winning Olympic champion in a year like no other.

Women also won the Queensland Junior Sport Star of the Year Award co-sponsored by The Courier Mail and Channel Seven (17-year-old Tokyo Olympic dual gold medal winner in relay swimmer Mollie O’Collaghan), the XXXX Queensland Sport Team of the Year (the all Queensland Australian Women’s 4×100 metres freestyle final winning gold medallists in Tokyo), and the rebel Queensland Junior Sport Team of the Year (the Queensland Under 18 Girls Hockey team which won the National Under 18 Championships).

Paralympian canoe / kayaker in Afghanistan veteran Curtis McGrath is the Queensland Government sponsored Queensland Sport Athelte with a Disability Award winner for his double gold medal performance in Tokyo.

Fifty percent of 20 Awards / Hall of Fame inductions were won / handed out to women who comprised 40% of the 65 Award finalists / Hall of Fame inductees for 2021.

Other Awards presented went to Sunshine Coast Lightning CEO and Melbourne Storm Board Director Danielle Smith as the 2021 Gallagher Queensland Sport Administrator of the Year, Olympians swimming coach Michael Bohl as the LGAQ Queensland Sport Coach of the Year, the 2020 AFL Grand Final at the Gabba as the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre Queensland Sport Event of the Year, Tokyo Olympics and Australian Open tennis official Cheryl Jenkins the Konica Minolta Queensland Sport Officiator of the Year and cycling volunteer official Pat Kerlin the Brisbane City Council Queensland Sport Volunteer of the Year.

Rugby league legend Allan “Alfie” Langer is the 21st Legend of Queensland Sport, with Madonna Blyth (hockey), Steve Corica (football), Toutai Kefu (rugby union), Gail Miller (water polo), Matthew Mitcham (diving) and the late Jack Reardon (rugby league) inducted into the Queensland Sport Hall of Fame.

Queensland Government sponsored Service to Sport Awards went to Karen Doyle (Skate), Ian Mayberry (Motorsport), and Rob Mundle OAM (Sailing), each for over 50 years’ service.

Over 600 in the audience, including the Premier of Queensland and Lord Mayor of Brisbane – both acknowledged for 25 years support of the Awards and who addressed attendees on the opportunities ahead via Brisbane 2032 and the importance of sport to Queenslander’s health and wellbeing and the Queensland economy – witnessed another high-quality presentation of top Queensland sporting achievements past and present.

In the 26 years of the current Awards program, 60% of the Sport Star and Junior Sport Star of the Year Awards have been won by women and girls – 15 out of 26 Sport Star and 16 out of 21 Junior Sport Star Awards

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