Barrett awarded Highlands' top honour

Clermont Bears halfback and 2017 Rookie of the Year Brodee Barrett has claimed this year's Jim Gallagher Medal at the Central Highlands Rugby League Awards Dinner held on Saturday.

Topping off a magnificent season which included Central Highlands and Regional Queensland Under 20 selection and a recent offer from the Capras to join the Hastings Deering Colts team; Barrett polled a total of 20 votes to claim the honour, edging out Springsure five-eighth and 2016 medal recipient Jared Owens by two votes.

Speaking after accepting the medal, Barrett thanked everyone who had helped him and spoke of how honoured he was to join the list of previous winners who have picked up the Central Highlands' top award.

"It's an absolute honour to receive this award," Barrett said. "As you could see on the screen earlier [the list of previous Jim Gallagher winners], there are some good players – Ray Ebsworth and Jared Owens in the room tonight ...it's an absolute honour to be on that board with them now.

"I can't thank everyone enough and it's an absolute pleasure."

Not only did the 19-year-old receive the most prestigious medal in Central Highlands football, but he was also announced as the Most Promising Men's Representative Player and Most Valuable Under 20 Representative Player.

Springsure's Ray Ebsworth was voted the Central Highlands Referees' Best and Fairest for the second year in a row and is the first player to claim back-to-back honours as voted by the match officials.

CHRL President Greg Coase with Men's Rookie of the Year Tom Colwell and 2017 Jim Gallagher Medallist Ray Ebsworth.
CHRL President Greg Coase with Men's Rookie of the Year Tom Colwell and 2017 Jim Gallagher Medallist Ray Ebsworth. ©Damian Freiberg

In the Women's competition, it was a history-making night with the first tie occurring in the tally for the Rhiannon Rowe Medal.

Emerald Cowgirls' Deb Barchard and Dysart's Tegan Rolfe couldn't be split, both polling 18 votes ahead of Sarah Hicks (17) and Rookie of the Year Jasmine Walters (16).

The night also saw the bestowment of life membership to long-time League servant Graham "Storky" Campbell.

CHRL President Greg Coase with Women's Rookie of the Year Jasmine Walters and 2017 Rhiannon Rowe Medallist Miranda Davidson.
CHRL President Greg Coase with Women's Rookie of the Year Jasmine Walters and 2017 Rhiannon Rowe Medallist Miranda Davidson. ©Damian Freiberg

QRL Central Highlands Operations Manager Cameron Stallard said it was great to recognise the people who make rugby league in the Central Highlands successful.

"Not only is the Awards Dinner about announcing and congratulating our players who have achieved greatness on the field, but also about celebrating this year's season and thanking the players and most importantly the club and league officials," Stallard said.

"I would particularly like to thank Central Highlands Rugby League executives Greg Coase, Chrissy Walters, Tracy McIndoe and Graham Campbell for their dedication to the game this season, as well as our school-based trainee Jasmine Walters who has also made a significant contribution to the game this season.

"I congratulate all of the award recipients, particularly Brodee, Deb and Tegan who have had outstanding seasons and I would also like to congratulate and thank the Central Highlands community for coming out and supporting our players and clubs.

"I hope you have enjoyed the greatest game of all this season."

2018 CENTRAL HIGHLANDS RUGBY LEAGUE AWARDS

Men's Most Tries: Peter McLaughlin (Bluff Rabbitohs) - 27 tries
Women's Most Tries: Tamyra Hunter (Emerald Tigers) - 18 tries
Men's Most Points: Shae Cox (Blackwater Crushers) - 228 points
Women's Most Points: Zoe Mackay (Blackwater Crushettes) - 82 points
Men's Representative Player of the Year: Ray Ebsworth (Springsure Mountain Men)
Most Valuable Men's Representative Player of the Year: Chris Conway (Bluff Rabbitohs)
Most Promising Men's Representative Player of the Year: Brodee Barrett (Clermont Bears)
Women's Representative Player of the Year: Mariah Storch (Blackwater Crushettes)
Most Valuable Women's Representative Player of the Year: Kailah Rogers (Emerald Cowgirls)
Most Promising Women's Representative Player of the Year: Deb Barchard (Emerald Cowgirls)
Under 20 Representative Player of the Year: Tom Colwell (Emerald Tigers)
Most Valuable Under 20 Representative Player of the Year: Brodee Barrett (Clermont Bears)
Most Promising Under 20 Representative Player of the Year: Toby Walker (Emerald Cowboys)
Under 18 Representative Player of the Year: Kelly Conway (Bluff Rabbitohs)
Most Valuable Under 18 Representative Player of the Year: Callum Anderson (Dysart Bulls)
Most Promising Under 18 Representative Player of the Year: Brody Webb (Emerald Tigers)
Volunteer of the Year: Jay Edwards
Referee of the Year: Jasmine Walters
Most Improved Referee of the Year: Brayden Weise
CH Referees' Player of the Year: Ray Ebsworth (Springsure Mountain Men) – 16 votes
Men's Rookie of the Year: Tom Colwell (Emerald Tigers) - 12 votes
Jim Gallagher Medal: Brodee Barrett (Clermont Bears) - 20 votes
Women's Rookie of the Year: Jasmine Walters (Emerald Tigers) - 16 votes
Rhiannon Rowe Medal: Deb Barchard (Emerald Cowgirls) and Tegan Rolfe (Dysart Bulls) - 18 votes

*Photos courtesy of Damian Freiberg