Gofers, Jaukovic and Waugh Sportspeople of the Year

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View Photos from the night here – 2008 Sports Awards Dinner

Graham Croker

Beijing Olympic Games women’s water polo bronze medallist Taniele Gofers is the 2008 Sydney University Sportswomen of the Year, while the men’s award has been shared by swimmer Matt Jaukovic, who holds the world record in the 50m butterfly, and rugby union flanker Phil Waugh, who captained NSW to the Super 14 final last year.
The winners were announced last night at the annual Sydney University Sports Awards in the Great Hall.
Gofers, a Sydney University Sports Scholarship holder and member of the Sydney University Lions in the National Water Polo League, had strong competition for the award from diver Alex Croak, who also represented Australia at the Beijing Games, netballer Susan Pratley, a member of the Sydney Swifts, winners of the Trans-Tasman League championship and the Australian team that played Tests against New Zealand and England, and wheelchair basketballer Sarah Stewart, who scored a crucial last-minute goal at the Beijing Paralympics that secured a bronze medal for Australia.
Competition for the men’s award was also tough, with Jaukovic and Waugh being named ahead of the 2007 winner, Test cricket Stuart Clark, who was also a member of the winning NSW Sheffield Shield side, and middle-distance runner Lachlan Renshaw, who represented at the Beijing Games after winning the Australian 800m title.
As well as his efforts at national and state levels, Waugh was also a member of the Sydney University team that took out the Shute Shield and was awarded with the Waratah Medal as the Waratah’s most outstanding on and off-field contributor.
Jaukovic not only set a world record in the 50m butterfly, he also registered eight wins at World Short Course events and set a new Australian record for the 100m butterfly. He is also a Sports Scholarship holder.
The awards were presented by Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Don Nutbeam.
The Premier Coach of the Year was taken out by the Football Club’s Damien Hill, Trevor Woodman and Anthony Eddy who guided the First Grade to a fourth successive Sydney First Grade rugby union premiership.
Others nominated for the award were Stephen Alderman (Swimming) and Mathew Phelps (Men’s Cricket).
Coach of the Year went to Stephen Dunne, who guided the American Football club to a sixth successive NSW Championship. He pipped Paul Howse (Women’s Cricket) for the award.
The Premier Club of the Year went to the Football Club (Men’s Rugby Union), which faced stiff competition from the Boat Club and the Swimming Club.
In a stellar season, the Football Club won a fifth consecutive Club Championship, a fourth consecutive First Grade premiership, a fourth consecutive Colts Club Championship and the Sydney Morning Herald Club of the Year.
The club also fielded 11 Australian representatives, including three Wallabies, three Australia A players, two Australia Sevens players and three Australian Under 20 players, and 23 Super 14 players.
The award was presented by John Kean and accepted by SUFC President, David Mortimer.
The Club of the Year was awarded to the Athletics Club, which edged out the Volleyball and American Football clubs for the title.
During the year the Athletic Club launched a Foundation, celebrated its 130th anniversary, won three NSW Relay Championships, provided five national champions (Lachlan Renshaw 800m, Nicky Molan 1500m, Justin Merlino 110m hurdles, Lara Tamsett U23 5000m and 10,000m, and Jess Heazelwood U23 20km walk) and two representatives at the Beijing Olympic Games.
The Pat Sharp Award for the Female Club Administrator of the Year was awarded to Christine Etter of the Swimming Club, while the Rosenblum Family Award for the Male Club Administrator of the Year was awarded to Jason McLennan of the Men’s AFL Club.
And the Ann Mitchell Award for the best performed AUC or AUG Team went to the Men’s AUC Twenty20 Cricket Team, captained by Will Hay, which won back-to-back Australian University Championships.