Tuesday 20 March 2018 / 03:14 AM


Via NSWRL Media

NSW Blues front-rower David Klemmer has tonight been crowned the 2017 Brad Fittler Medal winner following an impressive State of Origin campaign in which he ran for more metres than any forward from NSW and Queensland across the three-game series.

Klemmer amassed 519 metres after starting all three games off the interchange bench, with Maroons’ Dane Gagai (577) and Blues teammate James Tedesco (541) the only players who tallied more metres.

On a night that recognised the achievements of players across all NSWRL teams and competitions, from Origin to seniors, juniors, women and Indigenous, as well as the contributions of referees and club officials, Klemmer accepted the state’s top award in front of more than 600 guests at The Star Event Centre.

The 22-year-old polled the highest votes from fellow Blues teammates, as well as Laurie Daley and his coaching staff. Previous winners include Josh Jackson (2016) Josh Dugan (2015), Jarryd Hayne (2014), Paul Gallen (2011) and Danny Buderus (2008).

Klemmer said he was honoured to receive the prestigious individual award.

“Growing up, Brad Fittler was one of my idols and to accept the award named after him is a special moment,” Klemmer said.

“I wouldn’t have received this award without the players around me. As a Rugby League player you don’t necessarily think about individual honours but it’s nice to be recognised for my performance.”

In his debut year, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles forward Jake Trbojevic claimed both The Daily Telegraph People’s Choice Award and the True Blue Award for his contribution off the interchange bench.

The Daily Telegraph People’s Choice Award is chosen by Blues supporters, while the True Blue Award is picked for the player who displays qualities upon which the team culture is built.

Origin stars shared the stage with some of the state’s rising talent as Manly’s Joshua Schuster took out the Under-16 NSW State Player of the Year, Zac Lomax (St George Illawarra) claimed the Under-18 award, while Melbourne’s Curtis Scott was named the Under-20 NSW State Player of the Year.

Caitlin Moran (North Newcastle) was recognised for her stellar season, taking out the Harvey Norman Women’s Premiership Player of the Year, while Simaima Taufa (Mounties) claimed the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s State Player of the Year for her performance in the state’s victory over Queensland in the Interstate Challenge.

In the senior competitions, to be decided on NSWRL Grand Final Day at Leichhardt Oval later this month (24 September), Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles playmaker Cameron Cullen was crowned Intrust Super Premiership NSW Player of the Year, Heath L’Estrange (Hills District Bulls) was named Ron Massey Cup Player of the Year and Christian Bate (Belrose Eagles) claimed Sydney Shield’s Player of the Year.

List of Awards Winners:

U16 NSW State Player of the YearJoshua SchusterManly-Warringah Sea Eagles
U18 NSW State Player of the YearZac LomaxSt George Illawarra Dragons
U20 NSW State Player of the YearCurtis ScottMelbourne Storm
Junior Representative Referee of the YearDaniel Luttringer
Grade Referee of the YearDarian Furner
Ray Stellar Award (Club Person of the Year Award)Eric GallowayBelrose Eagles
KARI Indigenous Achievement AwardUlysses RobertsMacksville
Harvey Norman Women’s Premiership Player of the YearCaitlin MoranNorth Newcastle
Harvey Norman NSW Women’s State Player of the YearSimaima TaufaMounties
Sydney Shield Player of the YearChristian BateBelrose Eagles
Ron Massey Cup Player of the YearHeath L’EstrangeHills District Bulls
Intrust Super Premiership NSW Player of the YearCameron CullenBlacktown Workers Sea Eagles
The Daily Telegraph People’s Choice AwardJake TrbojevicManly-Warringah Sea Eagles
True Blue AwardJake TrbojevicManly-Warringah Sea Eagles
Brad Fittler MedalDavid KlemmerCanterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs

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