The Halberg Foundation today announced that 76 nominations have been submitted from National Sports Organisations and an independent Nominations Board for the 60th ISPS Handa Halberg Awards Nominations.

The 60th ISPS Handa Halberg Awards are both a significant milestone of achievement – and one of reflection and remembrance with the passing of the man whose name adorns this occasion. The late Sir Murray Halberg (ONZ) re-established the Awards in 1963 to honour and celebrate sporting excellence, and most importantly, the occasion formed the major fundraiser for the Halberg Foundation. Sir Murray founded the charity which aims to enhance the lives of physically disabled young New Zealanders by enabling them to participate in sport and recreation.

An independent Nominations Board, which comprise respected individuals from the sporting sector, has confirmed the nominations in six categories, with winners to be announced at the 60thISPS Handa Halberg Awards at Spark Arena in Auckland on Wednesday 15 February 2023 and broadcast live on Sky Sport and free to air on Prime TV from 8.30pm.

The nominations come from 30 sporting codes for achievements within the last 12 months (1 December 2021 to 30 November 2022). 

“This is a particularly poignant occasion as we remember and celebrate the remarkable life of Sir Murray, but at the same time we continue to be driven by his vision for the Halberg Foundation,” said Halberg Foundation Chief Executive, Tom Smith. “We have received nominations from such a remarkable and diverse range of athletes, sporting codes and performances that have all earned their nomination for the 60th Halberg Awards milestone occasion and we look forward to celebrating them in February 2023.”

The ISPS Handa Sportsman of the Year has received the most nominations with 22 across 18 sports. They include Winter Olympic freeski gold medallist Nico Porteous; motorsport drivers Shane van Gisbergen and Brendon Hartley; All Black Ardie Savea; Track and Field’s Tom Walsh (shot put) and Hamish Kerr (high jump); eventing equestrian Tim Price; rower Jordan Parry; kiwi rugby league star Joey Manu; football’s Marko Stamenic; trampoline world champion Dylan Schmidt; Black Caps bowler Ajaz Patel; squash Superman Paul Coll; cyclist Aaron Gate; mountain biker Sam Gaze; swimmer Lewis Clareburt; golfers Steven Alker, Ryan Fox and Jamie Reid; MMA exponent Fergus Jenkins; triathlete Hayden Wilde and record-setting jockey James McDonald.

There are 13 nominations from seven sports for the ISPS Handa Para athlete/Para team of the Year including seven-time winner Dame Sophie Pascoe and fellow swimmer Cameron Leslie; Track and Field Paralympians Holly Robinson (javelin) and Lisa Adams (shot put); Para alpine ski racers Corey Peters and Adam Hall; Para cyclists Nicole Murray, Devon Briggs, Anna Taylor and Eltje Malzbender; the Wheel Blacks (wheelchair rugby); Rachel Maia (sport climbing); and Scott Martlew (sprint kayak).

The High Performance Sport New Zealand Sportswoman of the Year award attracted 16 nominations covering 12 sports. They include skiers Zoi Sadowski-Synnott (snowboarding) and Jess Hotter (freeride); Black Ferns Ruahei Demant, Portia Woodman and Theresa Fitzpatrick; rugby league’s Raecene McGregor; equestrian Jonelle Price; rowing single-sculler Emma Twigg; trampolinist Bronwyn Dibb; squash star Joelle King; the current supreme Halberg Champion Dame Lisa Carrington (sprint kayak); cyclists Bryony Botha, Ellesse Andrews and Niamh Fisher-Black; 2013 supreme Halberg winner Lydia Ko (golf) and bowls exponent Tayla Bruce.

The ISPS Handa Team of the Year has six nominations from five sporting organisations. They comprise the Rugby World Cup winning Black Ferns; FEI Eventing World Championships medallist New Zealand Eventing team; rowing world champions Kerri Williams and Grace Prendergast; Commonwealth Games gold medallists Joelle King and Paul Coll (squash – mixed pair); and Joelle King and Amanda Landers-Murphy (squash – women’s doubles); and mountain bike Enduro World Champions Matthew Walker, Edward Masters and Charles Murray.

All nominations for Para athlete/Para team, Sportswoman, Sportsman and Team are all eligible for the supreme Halberg Award, the country’s highest accolade for sporting excellence.

There are 10 nominations for the Buddle Findlay Coach of the Year including four-time winner Gordon Walker (sprint kayak); men’s endurance track cycling coach Craig Palmer; rugby’s Black Ferns coach Wayne Smith; rowing’s Mike Rodger; swim coaches Gary Hollywood and Thomas Onley; Matt Toa (MMA); and snow sports Sean Thompson (snowboarding); Ben Adams (Para alpine ski racing) and Tommy Pyatt (freeskiing).

The Sky Sport Emerging Talent has attracted nine outstanding nominations across seven sports comprising freeski halfpipe exponent Gustav Legnavski and freeskier Ruby Andrews; Tara Vaughan (sprint kayak); Para cyclist Ben Westenberg; downhill mountain bike world champion Jenna Hastings; para swimmer Joshua Willmer and swimmer Cameron Gray; shot put and discus exponent Tapenisa Havea and figure skater Jocelyn Hong.

The nominations will be reviewed by the independent Awards judges, who mostly comprise former elite athletes and coaches, sports administrators and current sports media, before voting on a shortlist of finalists to be announced in January 2023.

The ISPS Handa Halberg Awards is New Zealand sport’s biggest night of the year, staged in a glittering black-tie ceremony at Spark Arena, Auckland on Wednesday 15 February 2023. Tickets are available now by contacting [email protected].

Full list of nominations for the 60th ISPS Handa Halberg Awards

ISPS Handa Sportsman on the Year (eligible for Supreme Halberg Award)

Aaron Gate (cycling – track), Ajaz Patel (cricket), Ardie Savea (rugby), Brendon Hartley (motorsport), Dylan Schmidt (gymnastics – trampoline), Fergus Jenkins (mixed martial arts), Hamish Kerr (athletics – high jump), Hayden Wilde (triathlon), James McDonald (horse racing), Jamie Reid (golf), Joey Manu (rugby league), Jordan Parry (rowing), Lewis Clareburt (swimming), Marko Stamenic (football), Nico Porteous (freeskiing), Paul Coll (squash), Ryan Fox (golf), Sam Gaze (cycling – mountain bike), Shane van Gisbergen (motorsport), Steve Alker (golf), Tim Price (equestrian), Tom Walsh (athletics – shot put).

ISPS Handa Para Athlete/Para team of the Year (eligible for supreme Halberg Award)

Adam Hall (Para skiing), Anna Taylor (Para cycling), Cameron Leslie (Para swimming), Corey Peters (Para skiing), Devon Briggs (Para cycling), Eltje Malzbender (Para cycling), Holly Robinson (Para athletics – javelin), Lisa Adams (athletics), Nicole Murray (Para cycling), Rachel Maia (Para sport climbing), Scott Martlew (Para sprint kayak), Dame Sophie Pascoe (Para swimming), Wheel Blacks (Wheelchair rugby).

High Performance Sport New Zealand Sportswoman of the Year (eligible for supreme Halberg Award)

Bronwyn Dibb (gymnastics – mini trampoline), Bryony Botha (cycling – track), Ellesse Andrews (cycling – track), Emma Twigg (rowing), Jess Hotter (skiing – freeride), Joelle King (squash), Jonelle Price (equestrian), Dame Lisa Carrington (sprint kayak), Lydia Ko (golf), Niamh Fisher-Black (cycling – road), Portia Woodman (rugby), Raecene McGregor (rugby league), Ruahei Demant (rugby), Tayla Bruce (lawn bowls), Theresa Fitzpatrick (rugby), Zoi Sadowski-Synnott (skiing- snowboard).

ISPS Handa Team of the Year (eligible for supreme Halberg Award)

Black Ferns (rugby), Joelle King and Amanda Landers-Murphy (squash – women’s doubles), Joelle King and Paul Coll (squash – mixed doubles), Kerri Williams and Grace Prendergast (rowing – pair), Matthew Walker, Edward Masters and Charles Murray (cycling – mountain bike enduro team), New Zealand Eventing Team (equestrian).

Buddle Findlay Coach of the Year

Ben Adams (Para skiing), Craig Palmer (cycling – men’s endurance track), Gary Hollywood (swimming), Gordon Walker (sprint kayak), Matt Toa (mixed martial arts), Mike Rodger (rowing), Sean Thompson (Skiing – snowboarding), Thomas Onley (Para swimming), Tommy Pyatt (Skiing – freeskiing), Wayne Smith (rugby).

Sky Sport Emerging Talent

Ben Westenberg (Para cycling), Cameron Gray (swimming), Gustav Legnavsky (skiing – freeski halfpipe), Jenna Hastings (cycling – downhill mountain bike), Jocelyn Hong (figure skating), Joshua Willmer (swimming), Ruby Andrews (skiing – freeskiing), Tepenisa Havea (athletics – shot/discus), Tara Vaughan (sprint kayak).


Contact: Ian Hepenstall [email protected]