The leaders of women’s sport in NSW have been recognised today at the NSW Government’s annual Her Sport Her Way Awards.
The Awards honour the achievements of women leaders in sport and organisations across five categories with international cricket umpire Claire Polosak taking out the top award, the Her Sport Her Way Champion, following an outstanding year which included being the first woman to officiate in a Test match and overseeing Cricket NSW’s female umpire development pathway.
Minister for Sport Geoff Lee congratulated Claire and the other winners and said they were breaking down barriers for women’s sport in NSW.
“Women’s sport in NSW continues to grow thanks to the vision, leadership and determination of people like these,” Mr Lee said.
“Through their tireless efforts there are more opportunities for women and girls to participate in sport in NSW.”
Claire Polosak’s achievements as an umpire have inspired many women and girls to take up the role and her work as an umpire educator at Cricket NSW ensures they receive the training and support they need. “It’s very humbling to receive such an award,” Ms Polosak said.
“Nothing can happen in isolation and without the support of Cricket NSW, the NSW Cricket Umpires’ and Scorers’ Association and my family I wouldn’t have been able to progress along the pathway I have.
“I feel really lucky that I’m in such a position but with that comes a heavy sense of responsibility to ensure that I can help encourage and inspire young women to become involved in officiating and receive opportunities that are commensurate with their ability.”
NSW Rugby League Head of Competitions Yvette Downey was announced 2021 Trailblazer for overseeing significant growth in women and girls’ participation, creating an unbroken pathway and removing participation barriers in rugby league.
“Winning this award means a lot,” Downey said.
“Over the past five years we have really led the female sports space. I hope the fact that I am female opens peoples’ eyes and other women realise they can work in sports that are traditionally male dominated.”
The Awards are part of the NSW Government’s women in sport strategy, Her Sport Her Way which aims to increase participation opportunities and attract investment and recognition for women’s sport.
Her Sport Her Way Awards 2021 Winners and Runners-Up
Her Sport Her Way Champion
Winner: Claire Polosak, Umpire, Cricket NSW
Runner Up: Jennifer Kenny, Surf Life Saving NSW
Winner: Yvette Downey, Head of Competitions, NSW Rugby League
Winner: Shivani Lakha, Tennis NSW Youth Advisory Group
Runner-Up: Grace Tam, Participation Coordinator, Volleyball NSW
Winner: Cricket NSW
Runners-Up: Tennis NSW and Wheelchair Sports NSW/ACT
Winner: Natasha Anstee, Coach, Workers Gol Gol Cricket Club
Runner-Up: Kylie Tzavaras, President, Baulkham Hills Netball Association