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Finalists announced for 'The Don' Award

14 September 2017

Sport Australia Hall of Fame this week announced the seven shortlisted candidates for ‘The Don’ award which largely comprise of Queensland athletes. 

‘The Don’ is the most prestigious and highly sought-after sporting award named in honour of the late Sir Donald Bradman AC. The award will be presented to the Australian athlete/team who has ‘most inspired the nation’ through their sporting performance within the past twelve months.

The lucky recipient will join an elite group of Australian sporting legends such as Ian Thorpe, Cathy Freeman, Pat Rafter and Grant Hackett who were also awarded with ‘The Don’ in previous years.

This year’s finalists are all worthy and deserving recipients of such recognition but none other than Queensland athletes:

Jeff Horn – Following his highly publicised WBO welterweight title win against Manny Pacquiao, Horn displayed humility and sportsmanship which reaffirmed his suitability and nomination for ‘The Don’ award.

The Matildas – Australia’s female soccer team claimed victory in the Tournament of Nations by defeating arch rival, Brazil 6-1 in August. The team’s Queensland representatives; Clare Polkinghorne, Hayley Raso, Katrina Gorry and Elise Kellond-Knight largely contributed to the team’s success this year and are deservedly shortlisted as potential award winners.

Sally Pearson – Pearson dominated the track this year taking home her second world championship title in the women’s 100m hurdles. Her resilience, determination and inspirational comeback on track has positioned her as a deserving winner of ‘The Don’ this year.

Emily Seebohm – Having suffered from an illness which prompted her career’s end, Seebohm returned to the pool in July and took the top podium position in the 200m Backstroke event at the World Championships in Budapest. Seebohm’s gold-winning swim signified her belonging to ‘The Don’s’ potential recipients.

Johnathan Thurston – Thurston’s final State of Origin series saw him lead the Queensland Maroons to victory and claim a third consecutive win over the Blues. Despite serious injury, Thurston played a crucial role in the team’s series win and is undoubtedly a deserved winner of ‘The Don’.

‘The Don’ award winner will be announced at the 33rd Sport Australia Hall of Fame Annual Induction and Awards Gala Dinner on Thursday, 12th October at The Crown, Melbourne.

Past award-winners:

2016 - Michelle Payne (Horse Racing)

2015 - Jason Day (Golf)

2014 - Sally Pearson (Athletics)

2013 - Adam Scott (Golf)

2012 - Sally Pearson (Athletics)

2011 - Cadel Evans (Cycling)

2010 - Lydia Lassila (Aerial Skiing)

2009 - Steven Hooker (Athletics)

2008 - Steven Hooker (Athletics), Matthew Mitcham (Diving)

2007 - Glenn McGrath (Cricket), Shane Warne (Cricket)

2006 - Kerryn McCann (Athletics), The Socceroos (Soccer)

2005 - Grant Hackett (Swimming)

2004 - Petria Thomas (Swimming)

2003 - Damien Oliver (Horse Racing)

2002 - Steven Bradbury (Speed Skating), Alisa Camplin (Aerial Skiing)

2001 - Patrick Rafter (Tennis)

2000 - Catherine Freeman (Athletics)

Last updated
14 September 2017