The Townsville Blackhawks are set to play in the finals again this year, but have gotten in early to celebrate the achievements of their players during the season.
Last week, talented hooker Josh Chudleigh was named the 2021 Blackhawks Player of the Year at the club’s presentation of awards.
The awards night was originally booked in at the start of the year for before what was supposed to be the final round of the regular season, but due to COVID-19 lockdowns; the season has been pushed back, with the grand final to take place in October.
“Our presentation was going to be just before our final round, but COVID had other plans for us,” football operations manager Adrian Thomson said.
“Josh was so far ahead on points that no one was going to catch him, so we decided to stay with the same date.
“We are just happy to be playing and the season is still going.”
Blackhawks coach Aaron Payne praised his No.9, saying Chudleigh typified the kind of player team mates wanted to play with.
“Josh has had a fantastic year and deserves this award,” Payne said.
“He is super reliable, consistent, punches out big minutes in the middle and is always competing. And defensively he always sures up our middle.
“From a coach’s perspective, he’s the complete package.
“He is great to coach, always a threat to the opposition and as tough as they come.
“Our players also picked him players' player; the player they most want to play with. And that’s a good example of why he got the award and why he is so important to our group.
“His team mates know what they are going to get from him every week.”
Townville Blackhawks 2021 award winners
Intrust Super Cup
Mendi Player of the Year – Josh Chudleigh
Players' Player – Josh Chudleigh
Best Forward – Josh Chudleigh
Best Back – Jaelen Feeney
Hastings Deering Colts
Player of the Year – Jake Bourke
Players Player – Mitch Fogarty
Best Forward – Joey Jensen
Best Back – Dylan White
Harvey Norman Under 19s
Player of the Year – Jordi-Rae Mahendrarajah
Auswide Bank Mal Meninga Cup
Player of the Year – Will Latu
Cyril Connell Challenge
Player of the Year – Jamal Shibasaki
Cr Russ Cook Community Award