Patrick Templeman’s outstanding season in the Intrust Super Cup was recognised on Wednesday night when the classy Wynnum Manly Seagulls utility received The Courier-Mail Medal in front of 350 guests at Brisbane City Hall.
Templeman, a Sunshine Coast junior who joined the Seagulls this year after a successful stint with the Canterbury Bulldogs in both the under-20s and NSW Cup competitions, has impressed for Wynnum at both fullback and five-eighth.
The 22-year-old dominated the voting with 34 points, nine clear of Hunters five-eighth and skipper Israel Eliab (25).
Templeman’s Wynnum Manly teammate Mitchell Frei finished in third on 23 points, while Robert Lui (Townsville, 22), Ryley Jacks (Burleigh 20), Luke Capewell (Redcliffe, 19), Cameron Cullen (Mackay, 19) and Matt Parcell (Ipswich, 19) were also prominent.
Including Templeman it was a night dominated by former under-20s graduates with all but one player in the Team of the Year having been aligned with an NRL club previously before joining the Intrust Super Cup to further develop their games.
The dominant season of the Townsville & Districts Blackhawks was acknowledged when the competition newcomers were presented with the John ‘Cracker’ McDonald Minor Premiership Shield.
The Blackhawks had further reason to celebrate when four of their players – Jahrome Hughes, Kyle Feldt, Michael Parker-Walshe and Daniel Beasley – were named in the inaugural ‘Team of the Year’.
Townsville’s major semi-final rivals, the PNG Hunters, enjoyed a memorable night with two big awards. Michael Marum was crowned Coach of the Year, while hooker Wartovo Puara was announced as the recipient of the XXXX People’s Choice Award.
Marmin Barba’s scintillating form carried onto the red carpet, with the Ipswich speedster adding the Winger of the Year accolade to his Leading Try Scorer gong.
It was a special night for the fast growing women’s game as well with Heather Ballinger announced as the Women’s Representative Player of the Year.
A numbered Queensland Female Representative Players list was unveiled, while NRL CEO Dave Smith presented former captain Karyn Murphy with a commemorative jersey honouring her service to the game.