Lang­don keeps award in fam­ily

Pilbara News - - Sport - Peter de Krui­jff

■ Midfielder and for­ward Zac Lang­don has gone one bet­ter this year in the an­nual Dampier Sharks Green and Gold Ball by win­ning the top gong.

Last year Lang­don lost out to his brother Guy for the league best and fairest, but brag­ging rights went to the youngest this year.

League coach Kris­tian Dic­ton spoke of Zac’s tough­ness in play­ing through the pain of a back in­jury in this year’s grand fi­nal.

The Dampier Mer­maid func­tion room was decked out with green and gold stream­ers and bal­loons for the evening.

Premier­ship win­ner and bar­be­cue king “Rocket” Rod Ni­choll and fel­low big man Mick Turner were given life mem­ber­ships for their ded­i­ca­tion to the club.

A rel­a­tive new­comer was named the best club man of the year. James For­rest has run the can bar, runs wa­ter, cleans up at the club and does ev­ery other lit­tle job you can think of week in, week out.

True to form he let out a cry of “go Shark­ers” af­ter a speech.

This year’s North Pil­bara Football League De Grey medal win­ner Dy­lan McCutcheon also polled well for votes in the Sharks league medal count, fin­ish­ing run­ner-up.

The midfielder epit­o­mised tough­ness this sea­son and also re­ceived the most coura­geous league player award.

Reece Stewart’s grow­ing lead­er­ship skills and role on the league side were re­warded with the league coach’s award.

Young­ster Jack Cronin was named the player of the fu­ture. Dic­ton said Cronin had played well all year, was al­ways avail­able for road trips, and stepped up week in, week out while also play­ing in un­der-18s games, usu­ally on the night be­fore a league match.

How­ever, his form in the last few rounds of the com­pe­ti­tion was spotty and it looked as though he would miss out on play­ing in the grand fi­nal.

He wore it on the chin, but when in­juries struck he got the call up the day of the big­gest match of the year.

Half-back Owen Cross was a well-de­served win­ner of the re­serves best and fairest.

A re­lent­less tack­ler, Cross’s phys­i­cal play was at times his big­gest op­po­nent on the field as he earned a few con­cus­sions on the way.

The young foot­baller is now known for wear­ing safety head­gear.

Last year’s win­ner and re­serves cap­tain Brent Ebert was the run­ner-up; one of his high­light plays of the year was a 55m goal in the semi­fi­nals.

Most coura­geous re­serves player went to Daniel “Ke­bab” Francesconi, whose late-sea­son form earned him a call-up into the league side and the grand fi­nal line-up.

Soc­cer player Har­ri­son Weed­ing was given the coaches award, pos­si­bly as en­cour­age­ment to give up the round-ball code.

Most im­proved re­serves player was Peter de Krui­jff.

Dic­ton paid trib­ute to all the vol­un­teers, can­teen helpers, club pres­i­dent Rus­sell Turner, spon­sors, and sup­port­ers.

Pic­tures: Peter de Krui­jff

League best and fairest Zac Lang­don and re­serves coach Doug Holt.

League run­ner-up best and fairest Dy­lan McCutcheon and re­serves best and fairest Owen Cross.

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