All-star cast for 2010 Sports Awards night

Peter Kennaugh

Peter Kennaugh

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FAMILIAR names such as Mark Cavendish, David Knight and Zoe Gillings top the list of stars shortlisted for the Isle of Man Bank-sponsored 2010 Sports Awards evening on Thursday, April 14 at the Villa Marina, but a host of other new, up-and-coming men and women are also included.

The steadily rising in popularity sport of archery is prominent in the women’s categories with Commonwealth Games teamsters Sarah Rigby and Aalin George among six shortlisted for the Sportswoman award.

Also named are gymnast Olivia Curran - cruelly robbed of her opportunity to perform in Delhi by a pre-event training injury - athlete Harriet Pryke, teenage golf champion Emma Harris and Olympic snowboardcrosser Zoe Gillings.

Half of the above list are also shortlisted for the under-21 gong, with Aalin George, Emma Harris and Harriet Pryke up for a double award against swimmer/sailor Hannah Howitt, Arsenal and Isle of Man women’s goalkeeper Elizabeth Stanley and Aalin George’s eldest sister Charlotte, also a talented archer.

The under-21 Sportsman category features star snooker player Darryl Hill, RS Tera Pro World Sailing champion James Kelly, Commonwealth Games bronze medal-winning cyclist Mark Christian, Games shooter Dan Shacklock, Wales Under-21 international hockey player Andrew Whiting and junior England badminton international Josh Green.

Tour De France star Mark Cavendish and World Enduro Champion David Knight again top the list of names for both the Sportsman and IoM Ambassador of the Year awards, together with Commonwealth Games bronze medallist double trap shooter Tim Kneale.

Joining the big three in the sportsman class are Parish Walk winner Jock Waddington, Mark Christian and fellow international cyclist Peter Kennaugh, while the Commonwealth Games duo of gymnast Alex Hedges and cyclist Andrew Roche are nominated for the Ambassador award alongside top British fell runner Lloyd Taggart.

The Disability Sportsperson award features Special Olympians Peter Taylor, Ollie Riddell, Andrew McGeehan, Tomas Dawe and last year’s recipient Paul Clucas, up against lone female, Paralympic equestrian exponent Rowan Caley.

The administrator of the year is another keenly contested category and included in this year’s shortlist are three of the main Isle of Man team officials from the Delhi Games. Trevor Taubman was the general team manager and Tonia Lushington the secretary general of Commonwealth Games Association IoM, as well as Chef de Mission.

Gary Hinds was the cycling team manager for the Games and has been an administrator for the sport for many years.

Joy Gough is a great motivator and organiser in archery, likewise former top athlete Steve Kelly is the chairman and mainstay behind Northern Athletics Club. Tony Mepham is the fixtures secretary and a vice-president of the Isle of Man Football Association.

Similarly, coach of the year is another interesting category. Shortlisted are seven individuals including Delhi Games coaches John Cain, Mike Doyle and Gennady Tsyganow (boxing, cycling and gymnastics respectively), island under-12s netball team coach Lynn Ilott and 2010 Premier Division football champions Rushen United’s first team coach/manager Gareth Jones.

Also nominated are Jenni Quillin, coach for the RS Tera Pro World Sailing team, and cricket development officer Gareth Dawson.

One of the most eagerly awaited announcements is always the team of the year and this year’s will be no exception.

The highly successful RS Tera Pro World Sailing team is likely to be in strong contention, along with the IoM under-17 cricket team that won the ICC Europe U17 Division Two Championship on home soil last summer.

Corinthians women’s football team completed a cleansweep of the Floodlit Cup, FA Cup and MBL Women’s League titles last season, while Vikings women’s hockey team was undefeated in local league and cup competitions, in addition to reaching the semi-finals of the EHA Vase competition in the UK, losing to the eventual winners.

The Isle of Man Commonwealth Games team as a whole has been nominated, in addition to the highly successful Team Royal London 360 youth cycling club which again scooped numerous national titles and accolades in 2010.

The evening will also include the presentation of lifetime and special achievement in the Isle of Man awards.

At least two new additions to the Isle of Man Sports Hall of Fame will be announced and the recipients of the various Sport Aid Foundation scholarships will receive their packages on stage.

The guest of honour is Olympic gymnast Beth Tweddle and a limited amount of tickets for the main function will shortly be available from Isle of Man Sport secretary Pauline Carr, National Sports Centre, Groves Road, Douglas - phone 688555 or email

Admission to the balcony area of Villa Marina’s Royal Hall for the presentations and announcements will be available on the evening from 8.15pm at the on-the-door fee of just £3.

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