South Toowoomba’s Trent Saxelby has won his first Holman Medal, taking out the league’s highest individual honour at Saturday night’s vote count.
Saxelby polled 22 votes to take the title ahead of the early leader Clinton Watts from Highfields who finished on 20 votes. Bookie’s favourite (if there was such a thing) Tom Rudolph finished on 18 votes to take third spot.
The award is made even more remarkable considering ‘Sax’ missed three games in the latter half of the year, so many so that he booked a trip to Mackay because he didn’t consider himself a chance to win.
Saxelby has adapted well to a change of positions throughout the season, beginning in the Ruck before moving to Centre Half Back. Playing on an opposition’s key leadup target is not always easy and Saxelby’s attack on the ball and on the contest is no doubt what helped catch the umpires attention.
For Watts, finishing in second caps of a superb season where he was able to go through the season playing all 16 matches for the Lions and like Saxelby, playing right across the ground.
In other awards, Lachlan Thomas (Dalby) & Luke Mason (Coolaroo) tied for the Best Under 18 player, Daniel McPhee (Souths) won the John Green Leading Goalkicker Award after booting 98 majors and Michael Casey (Coolaroo) won the Leo Camm Rosebowl for the best rookie.
Three-time Holman Medallist Brendan Iles finished down the leaderboard but picked up the Bill Shaw Representative Player of the Year award after his selection in the DD, Stockmen & QLD Country sides.
University cleaned up in the Reserve Grade awards, with Eddie Tong & Connor Pyke tying for the Best & Fairest with Pyke also taking home the leading goalkicker award with 20 goals.