2014 Hockey Award Winners
30 October 2014
HOCKEY: Hockey Australia crowned its top athletes at a glamorous awards night at the Aviary in Perth on Wednesday with the announcement of its Player of the Year, Top Goal Scorer and Player of the World Cup awards.
Kookaburras captain Mark Knowles was the evening’s big winner scooping men’s Player of the Year and sharing the Kookaburras’ Player of the World Cup award with teammate Eddie Ockenden.
Casey Sablowski [née Eastham] picked up the Hockeyroos’ Player of the Year award after her supreme consistency and outstanding performances helped the Australian women to a year of multiple medal successes, including World Cup silver and Commonwealth Games gold.
Jodie Kenny was also a double award winner on the night. She was named the Hockeyroos’ top scorer with a total of 23 goals and shared the honours with fellow defender and penalty corner specialist Anna Flanagan in the Hockeyroos’ Player of the World Cup award.
Another penalty corner flicker, Chris Ciriello, scooped the men’s top scorer award for his tally of 25 strikes, including three finals hat-tricks; at the Azlan Shah Cup, where the Victorian netted four in the final against Malaysia, at the World Cup where he struck three times against the Netherlands, and at the Commonwealth Games against India.
There was also recognition for those athletes that made milestone appearances with the inaugural presentation of pockets to those reaching 100, 200 and 300 appearances for Australia.
There were special tributes to World Cup winning coach Ric Charlesworth, who left his position with the Kookaburras in June, and two Kookaburras retirees, Liam De Young and Rob Hammond, who bowed out after making more than 560 appearances between them, twice each winning the World Cup.
Hockeyroos coach Adam Commens, who presented the Hockeyroos’ Player of the Year award, said: “Casey [Sablowski] had an outstanding year set up through an excellent preparation for all of our major tournaments. There was a real distinctive change in Casey’s attitude towards training this year; she was always an excellent trainer but she came with a real sense of purpose at the start of the year and she wanted to be not only one of our top players but one of the top players in the world. She set about doing that in every training session and we saw that in her game play this year. I was very excited about the way she played and I think this is just the start of a good few years ahead of her.”
Commenting on the success of Jodie Kenny and Anna Flanagan, Commens added, “Our defence was probably the platform for our success at the World Cup. Both Anna and Jodie played significant roles.
"Jodie has continued that form throughout not only the World Cup but the Commonwealth Games and the AHL. She’s an excellent one-on-one defender, she has a huge array of skills and she’s somebody that has gone from a very good defender to a world class player in the last 18 months. We saw her ability to put games away at the Commonwealth Games. To score 23 goals this year demonstrates why we regard her as one of the most influential players in world hockey at the moment.
“Anna’s an exciting player. At times I think we forget she’s only 22 years of age. Anna’s performances early in the tournament made the difference in getting a result in those crucial games. Her ability to execute her penalty corners and also her field play significantly contributed to the victories against Korea, Japan and Belgium.”
Kookaburras coach Graham Reid, who presented the Kookaburras Player of the Year award, said: “Not only has Mark [Knowles] been our best player for 2014, which has included the World League Finals, the Azlan Shah Cup, the World Cup and the Commonwealth Games, but he has also been an inspirational leader and he has provided that leadership at a time when we needed it.”
Reid added, “Chris [Ciriello] has been a world class flicker for a number of years but this year he has really stepped up and improved. Through the work with Luke Doerner, as with all of our drag flickers, Chris has come to the fore and to score a hat-trick in both the World Cup final and the Commonwealth Games final is a fantastic feat.
“And anyone who watched the World Cup will have seen those two players, Mark [Knowles] and Eddie [Ockenden], stood out. They played fantastically well across all of the games, including the final, and in the final I thought they were exceptional and this is just reward.”
Casey Sablowski and Anna Flanagan accepted their awards via video with both competing overseas in the Dutch Hoofdklasse league.
Full list of award recipients - Hockey Australia Awards 2014
Hockeyroos Player of the Year 2014 Casey Sablowski (née Eastham)
Hockeyroos Top Scorer 2014 Jodie Kenny (23 goals)
Hockeyroos Player of the World Cup 2014 Anna Flanagan & Jodie Kenny
Kookaburras Player of the Year 2014 Mark Knowles
Kookaburras Top Scorer 2014 Chris Ciriello (25 goals)
Kookaburras Player of the World Cup 2014 Mark Knowles & Eddie Ockenden
Hockeyroos 100 appearances Teneal Attard, Anna Flanagan, Kate Jenner, Jodie Kenny, Rachael Lynch, Georgia Nanscawen, Ashleigh Nelson, Jayde Taylor
Hockeyroos 200 appearances Madonna Blyth, Casey Sablowski
Kookaburras 100 appearances Kiel Brown, Chris Ciriello, Russell Ford, Matt Gohdes, Fergus Kavanagh, Simon Orchard, Matthew Swann, Glenn Simpson, Glenn Turner
Kookaburras 200 appearances Rob Hammond, Mark Knowles, Eddie Ockenden
Kookaburras 300 appearances Liam De Young, Jamie Dwyer
Kookaburras retirements Ric Charlesworth (coach), Liam De Young, Rob Hammond