HomeSportJackson Brown rewarded for outstanding season

Jackson Brown rewarded for outstanding season

Jackson Brown receives the Gary Stehbens Medal for the Northern District Rugby League Player of the Year from President Neil Redfern.
Jackson Brown receives the Gary Stehbens Medal for the Northern District Rugby League Player of the Year from President Neil Redfern at the Presentation Dinner at Miriam Vale on Saturday night. Photo: contributed

Rugby League

2021 South Kolan premiership star Jackson Brown, in his first season with Avondale Tigers, was rewarded for an outstanding season when he took out the Gary Stehbens Medal for Men’s Player of the Year at Northern Districts Rugby League’s Presentation Dinner at Miriam Vale on Saturday night.

He finished with 24 points over the 15 rounds, beating Isis Devils’ Royce Blair (21) and Miriam Vale Magpies’ Charles Hopf (20).

Veteran team-mate Brendon McKeown received the Finlay Family Trophy for Most Points with 84 from five tries and 32 goals in his first season in the NDRL, while Isis Devils duo Chris Wicks and Brent Hass picked up the trophies for Most Tries and Goals with 16 and 35 respectively.

Gin Gin Hawkettes dominated the Women’s League Tag (WLT) Awards, with Ruby Tobin taking out the McIntosh Homes Best and Fairest Trophy, and the silverware for Most Goals (31) and Points (118), while team-mate and 2022 Best and Fairest Jessica Galea snared Most Tries with 26.

Rookie of the Year Awards were won by Magpies’ Isaac Cahstano Kerr (Men), and Agnes Water Marlins’ Sophia Mojica (WLT), while Avondale Tigers duo Randall Cuthbert and Olivia Abell took home the Most Improved Player Awards, the Burnie Johnson Memorial Men’s gong, and WLT respectively.

Miriam Vale stalwarts father and son Garry and Glenn Cox each received NDRL Life Memberships, while Warren Bray picked up the Volunteer of the Year.

Finals start at Tegege this Sunday, with in the WLT, the Devils to fire up against the winless Tigeresses at 11.15 am, and minor premiers and two-times defending champions Gin Gin to take flight against Agnes Water after scaling the Marlins 32-0 in the last round a fortnight ago.

In the Men’s, South Kolan Sharks come up against Gin Gin Hawks at 1.15 pm, and minor premiers Isis take on hosts Avondale at 2.45 pm, with the Tigers hoping to repeat their 24-18 victory over the Devils two weeks ago.

NDRL Awards:

WLT Minor Premiers: Gin Gin Hawkettes 20 Points.

Men’s Minor Premiers: Isis Devils 24 Points.

Rookie of the Year Award – Men: Isaac Cahstano Kerr (Miriam Vale)

Rookie of the Year Award – WLT: Sophia Mojica (Agnes Marlins)

Burnie Johnson Memorial Most Improved Player: Randall Cuthbert (Avondale)
Most Improved Player WLT: Olivia Abell (Avondale)

WLT Most Tries: Jessica Galea (Gin Gin): 26.

WLT Most Goals: Ruby Tobin (Gin Gin): 31.

WLT Most Points: Ruby Tobin (Gin Gin): 14 tries, 31 Goals = 118 points

Slean Family Trophy Men’s Most Tries: Christopher Wicks (Isis): 16.

Alan Bush Trophy Men’s Most Goals: Brent Hass (Isis): 35.

Finlay Family Trophy Men’s Most Points: Brendon McKeown (Avondale): 5 Tries & 32 Goals. 84 Points.

Volunteer of the Year Award: Warren Bray NDRL.

Life Members: Glenn & Garry Cox

WLT Players of the Week Awards: Georgia Abbott (Agnes Waters) (W1, 2), Sophia Mojica (Agnes Waters) (W13), Sophie Moran (Agnes Waters) (W5,11,14), Lisa Irving (Agnes Waters) (W8), Anneleise Dilger (Isis) (W4, 5), Lilly Bauer (Isis) (W5), Courtney Jackson (Isis) (W7), Anna Kehl (Isis) (W7), Sarah Schifke (Isis) (W9), Jess Rowan (Isis) (W12), Megan Mechin (Isis) (W15), Gabrielle Galea (Gin Gin) (W1), Ruby Tobin (Gin Gin) (W3, 13,14), Chantel Bush (Avondale) (W7), Bobbi-Joy Purkis (Avondale) (W10).

Men’s Players of the Week: Royce Blair (Isis) (W1,2,7,12), Ben Buczma (Isis) (W2), Jake Thompson (Isis) (W3), Brent Hass (Isis) (W4), Tom Jameson (Isis) (W11), Dion Bunyan (Isis) (W15), Rowan Sutton (Gin Gin) (W9), Graham Jones (Gin Gin) (W15), Luke Einam (Miriam Vale) (W2), Charles Hopf (Miriam Vale) (W14), Lachlan Hazell (Miriam Vale) (W15), Ben Rayner (South Kolan) (W5), Esala Koro (South Kolan) (W6), Nathan Leather (Avondale) (W8), Viliami Tufulele (Avondale            ) (W10), Montgomery Chapman-Dynevor (Avondale) (W13), Jackson Brown (Avondale) (W15).

McIntosh Homes WLT Best & Fairest Award: 1st: Ruby Tobin (Gin Gin) 24+, 2nd Sophie Moran (Agnes Water) 21+, 3rd Georgia Abbott (Agnes Waters) 19+

Gary Stehbens Player of the Year Medal: Jackson Brown (Avondale) 24, 2nd Royce Blair (Isis) 21, 3rd Charles Hopf (Miriam Vale) 20.

Bundaberg Rugby League held their Awards Night last night.

Meanwhile, Waves Tigers will be without star fullback Cody Maughan, while his elder brother, captain, and powerhouse forward Reece is battling an ankle injury which he suffered at training on Tuesday night but coach Antonio Kaufusi is confident he will be cleared to play in their Bundaberg Broadcasters A Grade Premiership Qualifying Final blockbuster against West Panthers at Salter Oval at 6 pm today.

The Tigers will welcome back hooker Sam Tobin after he was rested for their last-round clash with Wallaroos two weeks ago.

Antonio admits the Panthers have “had the wood on us” this season, beating them 18-14 in the first round on March 25, and while the Tigers roared 22-10 on May 13, West won eight in a row, including taming the Tigers 24-6 on June 17, before their last-start 24-10 loss to minor premiers Past Brothers.

“But that doesn’t matter now – it’s what happens this week that counts, and we are excited for the challenge – the finals have finally arrived, and we have trained really well and are building towards them – they have got a really good forward pack and have got some good talent out wide as well,” he said.

Antonio has great faith in teenager Tumeli Naco, whom he said “has been unreal all year” and will fill Cody’s big shoes at fullback.

Earlier, East Magpies will meet Wallaroos in the Elimination Final at 4.15 pm.

The Magpies jumped Roos 32-22, ironically also in the season opener, but Roos returned the favour at home 42-30 in their May stoush, before East triumphed 28-20 when they last met in mid-June.

Roos were far from disgraced in a last-round 32-18 home defeat at the hands of the Tigers, while the Magpies escaped with a 36-32 victory over the winless Seagulls, but their coach Jacob Blanke is “quietly confident” they will advance to next week’s Minor Semi-final.

The Magpies will be bolstered by the returns of Trent Seeds, Ethan Ballard and Corey Chapman, and coach Jacob Blanke is also banking on hooker Will Walthall, with whom he won the title last year with Seagulls, continuing his “great form for us this year”.

Horse racing

Riding for the first time since bagging a double at Clermont, including the Clermont Cup on Starsonic, on 1st July, before suffering a nose injury when a horse's head hit hers, 20-year-old Rockhampton boom apprentice Brooke Johnson, confirmed herself as a Country Cups Queen and claimed the two feature races in a treble at the Bundaberg Race Club's premier meeting at Thabeban Park on Saturday.

Brooke was successful for her master Clinton Taylor on favourite, two-year-old Russian Revolution filly Russian Whisper, having her second start, in the Integrated Packaging Group QTIS Maiden Plate, and Stoical, which was having just his third start since being purchased from top Sydney trainers Peter and Paul Snowden, in the Haifa Lightning Handicap.

She then scored a dashing all-the-way win for top Rockhampton trainer Jared Wehlow on former Sydney-side Kobe Rocks ($3 equal-favourite) in the Lindsay Australia Ltd Bundaberg Gold Cup.

Jumping from the extreme outside barrier 10, Kobe Rocks hit the ground running and gave his rivals a galloping lesson, winning by 6.3 lengths, with last year’s Cup runner-up Dare to Share, and third placegetter, 2021 winner, and popular local veteran Wrecking Ball, filling the same placings for the second year in a row.

Brooke had also won the Emerald Cup on Starsonic on 20th May, and Gayndah Cup aboard Legend of Zoro in a double at Gayndah on 10th June, and booted home four winners at Bowen on 13 May.

She has now won 40 races since making her debut on 18 July last year when she launched her career with one winner.

Brooke had had no joy at her only previous trip to Bundaberg on 10 December last year, with three sixths and one eighth from her four rides.

Just one Bundaberg trainer was successful on the program, Laura Cronan, with Regalo D'Oro, with Adam Spinks in the saddle in the Nufarm/Visy Class B Handicap.

Top Gympie trainer Barry Gill combined with jockey Hannah Richardson for success with Nine Cigars in the Corteva/Rivulis Benchmark 60, while apprentice Gabrielle Semmens got the money on Take the Lead for Thangool trainer Kale Sinclair in the Higgins Coatings Class B.


Queensland representative star Ryley Stevens cut loose with three goals to be a match winner as Raiders/Rovers outgunned reigning champions Waves Cities 5-3 in their Division 1 Men’s clash at Hinkler Park on Saturday, while All Blacks edged out Arrows/Athletics 1-0.

In Division 1 Women, Premier League champions Raiders/Rovers had too many guns for Cities 3-1, while Malanie Stehbens led the charge for 2022 Bundaberg premiers Arrows in their 5-1 blitz of All Blacks.

Today, Cities take on All Blacks, with the Men at 3.20 pm and Women at 7.20 pm, with Arrows to target Raiders/Rovers, with their Men and Women at 4.40 pm and 6 pm respectively.

Weekend scores:


Raiders Rovers 10 (Ellena Crow 1, Eli Crow 1, Flynn Bock 1, Levi Kendall 2, Beau Kendall 2, Will Baldry 3) defeated Waves Cities 0

Arrows Athletics 2 (Jessica Stehbens 1, Amity Hannay 1) defeated All Blacks 0


Raiders Rovers won by forfeit from Waves Cities

Arrows Athletics 3 (Hamish Cook 3) defeated All Blacks 2 (Lachlan McLaren 2)


Raiders Rovers 1 (Alisha Paulsen 1) defeated Waves Cities 0

Arrows Athletics 2 (Ethan Kenny 1, Bridget Stehbens 1) defeated All Blacks 0

Division 2 Women

Raiders Rovers 3 (Christine Grant 1, Hailey Kendall 1, Reegan Wightman 1) defeated Waves Cities 1 (Gabrielle Aitkenhead 1)

Arrows Athletics 1 (Keely Kleidon 1) defeated All Blacks 0

Division 2 Men

All Blacks 1 (Edmund D’Albret 1) drew with Waves Cities 1 (Jarred Taylor-Muller 1)

Division 1 Women

Raiders Rovers 3 (Hailey Kendall 1, Susan Kendall 1, Courtney Kendall 1) defeated Waves Cities 1 (Cavannah Deller 1)

Arrows Athletics 5 (Sarah Korn 1, Ava McCaig 1, Ally Dunn 1, Malanie Stehbens 2) defeated All Blacks 1 (Leah McLaren)

Division 1 Men

Raiders Rovers 5 (Riley Webb 1, Colby Zahn 1, Ryley Stevens 3) defeated Waves Cities 3 (David Wenban 1, Lachlan McLennan 2)

All Blacks 1 (Nathan McGill 1) defeated Arrows Athletics 0


It will be a dress rehearsal for the AFL Wide Bay Men’s Premiership Semi-final in a fortnight’s time when Brothers Bulldogs host cross-town arch-rivals Waves Eagles at 2.30 pm today, while the unbeaten Bombers will do battle with Power in a Hervey Bay Local Derby.

Meanwhile, the Bulldogs’ Senior Women must beat reigning premiers Eagles at 1 pm to keep their Takalvans Premiership Semi-final hopes alive, but Waves will be hungry to bounce back after two straight losses.


A goal to Golden Boot leader Preston Cox was enough for hosts Across The Waves to get the points against United Park Eagles (UPE) 1-0 in their McDonald’s Football Queensland Premier League Men’s top-of-the-table thriller on Friday night.

On Sunday, hosts Bingera outmuscled KSS Jets 5-1 with a four-goal haul to Irish scoring machine Gary O’Donnell, Sunbury Blues upset Fraser Flames 3-2, and congratulations to SC Corinthians who were rewarded with their first win of the year, shocking their hosts Doon Villa 3-1, with Caiden Brown, Munashe Machekera, and Todd Bray each finding the back of the net.

In the McDonald’s FQPLWB Women’s League, the Flames burnt Tinana 5-0, and on Wednesday night, UPE scored a crucial 3-1 victory over Waves.

Tonight, Waves host Fraser at 8.30 pm, and Bingera are away to Tinana, with Jets and Villa to also go head-to-head.

In the Men’s, Tomorrow, all at 6pm, Waves host Fraser, Corinthians suit up against UPE at Martens Oval, and Bingera roll out the welcome mat to Sunbury, while there is also a Fraser Coast Derby between Jets and Villa.


With three rounds to go, Natives Magpies face the might of three-times defending champions Waves Gold in the Warren Family Homes Division 1 Premiership at the Superpark at 6.30 pm today.

Earlier at 5 pm, there will be a Bothers intra-club duel between Cyclones and Hurricanes, while Blue will be dominant in the showdown between the Waves and Alloway teams of that colour.

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