2024 AFLNZ Award Winners

The 2024 AFLNZ award winners have been announced. Congratulations to all the winners on their fantastic 2023 seasons. Read below the about the Winners and their successes

Youth Girls Player of the Year

Indy Gibson is an incredible young talent and has a big future ahead of her. Playing a key role for the Western Ravens in their 2023 Premiership Run as well as being named Captain of the Youth Girls side in the Mornington Campaign. Athletically gifted and incredibly hard working, Indy is a game breaking talent, and AFL New Zealand is excited to see just how far she can go.

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Makenna Jones – Central Shaker, NZ Youth Girls
Maia Peterson – NZ Youth Girls
Poppy Gibson – Central Shaker, NZ Youth Girls

Youth Boys Player of the Year

Cooper Clark is another outstanding young talent with a bright future in AFL. Captaining the Level 1 Academy team in 2023, he also played up an age group in the Level 2 Academy side. Cooper was also fortunate to play for the South Mornington U14’s side where he was among the best performers, kicking 3 goals across both the games that he played.

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Josh Lightbourne – Academy, NZ Level 2
Isaac Brown – Academy, NZ Level 2
Sam Meyer – Premiership Development Player

U19 Player of the Year

Lachie McBride had a fantastic season. In 2023 he made his debut for the Saints in the Premiership and quickly became one their key forward targets. Lachie also captained the NZ U19’s side that travelled to Melbourne last year, where he was among one of their best players in both games.

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Max Hammett – Premiership Development Player, NZ U19’s
Noah Allison – Southern Saints, NZ U19’s
Tane Kirton – Western Crows, NZ U19’s

Women’s Player of the Year

Canterbury based Naia Toaolamai-Holden is another great new talent for AFL in New Zealand and had a breakout season in 2023. Named as the Western Ravens Best and Fairest and also 3rd overall in the Premiership Best and Fairest, Naia is certainly a player to watch. Her off field contributions are also a huge asset to the sport and will help pave the way for the future of Women’s AFL in New Zealand.

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Andrea O’Reilly – Northern Storm Best and Fairest 2023
Jolyn Collins – Brunswick Football Club (VAFA)
Liv Waldron – Western Ravens, 2023 AFLNZ Women’s Premiership Best and Fairest

Men’s Player of the Year

Mykelti Leafu had an excellent end to 2023. Coming back from an ACL tear suffered in 2022, Mykelti went from strength to strength for the Richmond VFL side playing every game for the rest of their season. His standout performances for the VFL side lead to him gaining the opportunity to train with the Richmond AFL side over summer, for a chance at the final spot on their 2024 squad list.

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Jarred Percival – Southern Saints Best and Fairest, NZ Falcon
Lucas Jellyman Turner – NZ Falcon, 2023 Falcons vs All Stars Best on Ground
Misilifi Faimalo – Richmond VFL

Coach of the Year

Rob Malone is a great Coach and had what could be deemed as the greatest comeback season in Premiership history to lead the Central Giants to their 3rd Premiership Title. Having suffered early losses to start the season, the Giants then won every game for the rest of the season to be crowned Premiers. Rob was also Assistant Coach of the Falcons in their first clash in four years against the NZ All Stars, where the falcons went on to win by 61 points.

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Justin Gauci – Western Crows Assistant Coach, NZ U19 Head Coach
Brendan Clark – Academy Coach
Peter Geale – Central Shakers Coach, NZ Youth Girls Coach

Volunteer of the Year

Josh Robles is an outstanding Volunteer and has worked tirelessly as a coach and coordinator for the Youth and Academy in Christchurch. He was also Assistant Coach for Youth Girls side in their 2023 Mornington Campaign. Josh is not afraid to get his hands dirty, put’s his hand up to assist and will always make sure the job gets done, all while still managing to find time to train and play at a high level, representing the Falcons in the 2023 All Stars vs Falcons game

Congratulations to all the other nominees for their efforts in 2023
Howard Gilbert – Western Ravens Coach, Western Crows Manager, NZ Falcons Manager
Sam McCombie – Northern Storm player, Wellington Female recruiter
Jess McCormick – Northern Storm Player, Academy Youth Girls Coach/ Manager