2020 – Jai Hindley, Cycling
Jai Hindley claimed and astonishing second place in the famed Italian Grand Tour, the 2020 Giro d’Italia – one of the prestigious three-week-long Grand Tours in one of sports most gruelling tests of endurance. Making Hindley’s performance all the more remarkable, it was only his third Grand Tour start, riding support for team-mate Wilco Kelderman, in the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic.
2019 – Nathan Fyfe, Australian Football
Nathan Fyfe took the competition by storm in 2019, with the Dockers captain returning to his dominant best to not only claim his third Doig Medal as Fremantle’s best player, but also be awarded captaincy of the All Australian team of 2019, and ultimately become the first WA product to be crowned a dual Brownlow medallist.
2019 – Hannah Green, Golf
The meteoric rise of Hannah Green started in the Perth hills a decade ago, and in June 2019 her career hit its highest point to date when Hannah became the first West Australian to claim a major golf title, with a one stroke victory delivering her the Women’s PGA Championship at the Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota.
2018 – Samantha Kerr, Football (Soccer)
It was another stunning 12 months for Sam Kerr. She was named in the world’s top five in the inaugural women’s Ballon d’Or Sports Award. Samantha won the American national women’s soccer league golden boot award as the league’s top goal scorer for the second successive year. She was also top scorer in Australia’s W-League, and won the Julie Dolan Medal as the W-League Player of the Year. Sam was recognised by the Professional Footballers Association with the Women’s Footballer of the Year Award for the second year in a row, and rounded out 2018 by winning the International Women’s Soccer Player of the Year at the ESPY Awards.
2017 – Samantha Kerr, Football (Soccer)
Not only is Samantha Kerr a superstar in Perth, but the young West Australian has become a household name in the round ball game around the world, with the star Matildas and Perth Glory striker being widely recognised as the best female player in the game. In the American national league she had a record-breaking season for goals scored, and was named the league’s most valuable player. She was crowned the Asian Football Confederation women’s player of the year, after leading the Perth Glory women to the W-League Grand Final and being awarded the golden boot.
Sam rounded out the year by being named the 2017 Young Australian of the Year.
2016 – Curtis Luck, Golf
Curtis Luck stunned the golfing world in August 2016 at the Oakland Hills Country Club when he became just the third Australian to win the US Amateur Golf Championship – often referred to as golf’s fifth major – in its 121-year history. With his name etched on the US Amateur trophy alongside the likes of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer and Tiger Woods, Luck closed out 2016 with a Western Australian Open victory and the world number three amateur golf ranking.
2015 – Nathan Fyfe, Australian Rules Football
In a year where the Fremantle Dockers claimed their first minor premiership, and after bringing up his 100th AFL match during the 2015 season, Nathan received the highest individual accolade in the game when he became a Brownlow Medallist. His final Brownlow vote tally of 31 votes included a record equalling nine best-on-ground games, and an all-time record 17 votes over the opening eight rounds of the season. He was recognised as the leading player in the game by his peers, winning his second consecutive AFL Players Association Most Valuable Player award. Nathan was also named in the AFL All Australian team for the second consecutive year.
2014 – Mitchell Johnson, Cricket
Mitchell Johnson returned to international cricket in 2014 for the Australian Ashes Series, and after contributing 64 runs with the bat in the First Test, his intimidatingly quick and aggressive bowling spells engineered an English collapse from 2/82 to 136 all out. Johnson backed up the 4/61 in the first innings with 5/42 in the second to seal a crushing victory in a man-of-the match performance. In the second Test of the series, Mitchell delivered arguably his career-best test performance – taking 7/40 to engineer another spectacular English capitulation, on the way to a second straight man-of-the match effort. Johnson finished 2014 as the ICC Test Player of the Year, ICC Cricketer of the Year, and as Australia’s Allan Border Medallist.
2013 – Kimberley Mickle, Athletics
Kim Mickle became the first WA born and bred athlete to win a medal of any colour at the IAAF World Championships when she won a silver medal in javelin. Her final throw of 66.60m secured second place, which put her only 20cm off the national record.
2012 – Cameron Meyer, Cycling
At the 2012 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, Cameron Meyer won the World Points Race and placed second in the Madison. He also won the 2012 Berlin Six day race. On the road, Meyer placed second in the Australian National Time Trial Championships, and third in the UCI Road World Championship.
2011 – Cameron Meyer, Cycling
Cameron Meyer had a memorable 2011 on the bike, winning the Madison at the UCI Track Cycling World Championship, and placing second in the Team Pursuit at the same event. He was the winner in both of these events at both the Oceania Championships, and the National Madison Championships. Meyer also went from the track to the road, winning the National Time Trial Championships, the Tour Down Under (including the Best Young Rider classification), and the Tour de Perth.
2010 – Lauren Mitchell, Gymnastics
Lauren Mitchell won 4 gold medals at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi during October, 1 gold medal at the World Championships in Rotterdam also during October, and 3 gold medals at the World Cup in Stuttgart in November. She is also the first gymnastics World Champion from Australia.
2009 – Steve Hooker, Athletics – Pole Vault
At the 2009 World Athletics Championships in Berlin, Steve Hooker overcame a hamstring injury to win the Men’s Pole Vault Gold Medal, clearing 5.90 metres.
2008 – Steve Hooker, Athletics – Pole Vault
Steve Hooker started the year in March with a Bronze Medal at the IAAF World Indoor Championships in Valencia, Spain. Hooker rose to new heights when it mattered most, after setting a Games record of 5.96 metres to win Gold in the Men’s pole vault competition at the Beijing Olympic Games.
2007 – Michael Hussey, Cricket
Michael Hussey completed another remarkable year of international cricket emphasised by scoring 671 runs at the outstanding average of 111.83 in six tests. He played a significant part in the return of the Ashes and Australia ‘s 5-0 whitewash of the series. Michael was in the highest echelons of the ICC Test and One Day International batting rankings throughout 2007. Michael captained the Australian team in the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy against New Zealand.
2006 – Paul Burgess, Athletics
Paul Burgess posted some outstanding results at international competitions during 2006. Winning the pole vault at the World Athletic Grand Prix Final, he also claimed victories in the Rome, Berlin and Zurich legs of the Golden League. Paul also achieved third place in the World Athletics Tour at Rieti, Italy.
2005 – Ben Cousins, Australian Rules Football
West Coast Eagles Football Club captain Ben Cousins, completed his most successful season by taking out the AFL’s major award, the Brownlow Medal. The dynamic midfielder was named in the All-Australian team for the fifth time and equaled West Coast’s record by taking out the club’s best and fairest awards for the fourth time. During the season, Cousins was the AFL’s highest kick-getter with 391, and was second in the disposals category with 612.
2004 – Ryan Bayley, Cycling
Ryan Bayley was a dual gold medallist in the Men’s Sprint and Men’s Keirin and 4th in the Men’s Team Sprint at the Athens Olympic Games. He is Western Australia ‘s first individual Olympic Gold Medalist since Lyn McKenzie in 1968 and is Australia ‘s first dual cycling gold medallist.
Ryan was placed 3rd in the Men’s Sprint and 4th in the Men’s Keirin at the World Track Championships and 1st in the Men’s Sprint and 2nd in the Men’s Keirin at the Oceania Track Championships.
2003 – Peter Dawson, Cycling
At the World Track Cycling Championships in Germany , Peter Dawson came first in the Team Pursuit achieving a world record against participants from 15 countries. Peter came first in the Senior Men’s Australian Criterium Championship with 5 other States competing with 51 actual entries and first in the Pemberton 2 day tour, A Grade Road Race.
2003 – Adam Gilchrist, Cricket
Adam Gilchrist’s outstanding Test record for 2003 included 10 Test Matches and 12 Innings plus 18 Matches and 18 Innings in the One Day Internationals. Average Highest Score in the Test Matches was 133 runs with a total of 639 runs. Competing teams were from West Indies, England, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe. Average Highest Score in the One Day Internationals was 124 runs with a total of 310 runs.
2002 – Simon Black, Australian Rules Football
Simon Black took out Australian football’s greatest individual honour when he won the Brownlow Medal. Simon was drafted to Brisbane from East Fremantle and was a member of the back-to-back Brisbane Lions premiership winning team. He was also selected for the All-Australian football team.
2001 – Dmitri Markov, Athletics
Dmitri Markov cleared a career-best 6.05 metres to win the pole vault at the World Athletics Championships in Edmonton, Canada. It was one of the highest recorded in the world. He produced his best performance in the world for the year at the Monaco Athletics grand prix on 21st July.
2000 – Rechelle Hawkes, Hockey
Rechelle Hawkes captained the Australian Women’s Hockey Team, the Hockeyroos, to win Gold at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games against nine other countries. She was also prominent in Australia’s third placing in the Champion’s Trophy tournament, which is contested by the world’s top six teams.
1999 – Justin Langer, Cricket
Justin Langer became firmly established in the Australian Cricket team batting line-up. Langer was named Man of the Series at the 1999 home series against Pakistan, scoring 331 runs at an average of 82.75. The Test at Bellerive Oval in Hobart included a match-winning 238-run partnership with Adam Gilchrist in Hobart. His knock of 127 and the partnership with Gilchrist hauled Australia back from the brink of defeat at 5/126, to pass the victory target of 369 in one of the country’s most famous Test match victories.
1998 – Lucy Tyler-Sharman, Cycling
Lucy Tyler-Sharman won the gold medal in the Women’s individual pursuit race at the World championships in 1998.
1997 – Luc Longley, Basketball
Luc Longley maintained his starting place on one of the NBA’s all-time greatest teams, as the Chicago Bulls powered their way to a third successive NBA Championship.
1996 – Luc Longley, Basketball
Under the coaching of Phil Jackson, Luc Longley established himself as the Chicago Bulls starting centre in the second of the Bulls three-peat seasons, playing in the starting five alongside the likes of Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen and Dennis Rodman. In the process, Longley became the first Australian to win an NBA title.
1996 – Robert Scott, Rowing
Robert Scott won Silver at the Atlanta Olympic Games in the Stroke Australia’s Men’s Pair, Gold in the International Championships in Cologne , Silver in Dvisburg, Gold in the pre-Olympic trials in Lucerne . He came first in the Open Pair Stroke, Open Coxless Four Stroke & Open Eight Stroke at the National Championships.
1995 – Darryn Hill, Cycling
At the 1995 UCI Track Cycling World Championships, Darryn Hill blitzed the field to claim gold in the Men’s Sprint. He also won gold medals in the Sprint at World Cup meets in Adelaide and Tokyo.
1994 – Darryn Hill, Cycling
At the World Championships Darryn Hill won silver in the Sprint. He won bronze in the same event at the Commonwealth Games and picked up silver in the 1000m time trial. He won both the Sprint and Kierin events in Tokyo at the Grand Prix meet.
Darryn finished fourth in the lucrative 38-race Kierin racing series at six different venues throughout Japan . He was second in the 22-event preliminary series, then competed in another 16 races in the elite division. Darryn finished 1994 ranked number two in the world in the sprint.
1993 – Dean Capobianco, Athletics
With personal bests of 10:25sec (100m), 20:18sec (200m) and 45.76sec (400m) Dean Capobianco blitzed the field in the Australian Athletic Championships.
At the 1993 World Athletics Championships in Stuttgart, Germany, his 5th in the 200m final in a time of 20:18sec was the best performance by a West Australian at Olympic Games or World Championship level since Herb Elliott won the 1500m in Rome in 1960.
1992 – Peter Matera, Australian Rules Football
Peter Matera, a veteran of 253 matches, could lay claim to being one of the greatest players in the Eagles club history. He etched his name into football folklore in the 1992 AFL Grand Final with a signature performance. With five goals off a wing, Peter’s Norm Smith Medal winning performance helped deliver West Coast their maiden premiership.
1992 – Ramon Andersson, Canoe
Ramon Andersson, a PE teacher, won a bronze medal in the Men’s K-4 1000m at the Barcelona Olympics in August 1992. As a member of the four-man kayak crew, the team finished behind Germany and Hungary in the final.
1992 – Craig Parry, Golf
After showing enormous promise for a number of years, Craig Parry broke through and dominated the Australian tour like many had been predicting he would. He achieved victory in the Australian Masters early in the year, and followed up by claiming the CIG NSW Open and Ford Australian PGA Championship titles.
Craig also made his mark on the international stage where he led the US Masters field going into the last day, eventually finishing 13th. He enjoyed victory in the World Golf Championship Invitational with a 16 under par tournament that delivered a four-stroke victory.
1991 – Shelley Taylor-Smith, Swimming
In 1990 Shelley Taylor-Smith gave up school teaching to concentrate on a professional career as a long-distance swimmer, contesting nine marathon events in the 12 months to 30 September 1991 – and won them all.
Shelley’s most important success came on 10 January by becoming the first WA swimmer to win a gold medal in the 16-year history of the World Championships, in the 25km marathon held in the Swan River. Another gold came her way in the Pan Pacific marathon in Lake Sylvan, Canada in August. Shelley was first overall, beating some of the world’s leading male long-distance swimmers in the 36km Ocean Marathon World Championship at Atlantic City, New Jersey, stepping out of the water 6 minutes ahead of the second placegetter.
1991 – Roger Mackay, Golf
Roger Mackay was at one time a joint holder of the Heineken Classic course record of 63 along with 1991 British Open champion Ian Baker-Finch. Roger won the Visa Taeheiyo tournaments on the Japan Golf Tour during 1991.
1990 – Ian Brown, Swimming
Ian Brown’s dedication was rewarded after missing selection in the Australian team for the 1986 Commonwealth Games when he was not only selected for the 1990 Auckland Commonwealth Games, but came home with two gold medals and one silver. His winning time of 3 min 49.91 sec in Auckland made him the fourth fastest man in the world over 400m during 1990. His other gold medal was won in the 4 x 200m freestyle relay and the silver came in the 200m individual freestyle.
1990 – Bruce Reid, Cricket
Fast bowler Bruce Reid, dogged by recurring back injuries for much of his career, took 27 wickets in the Ashes victory series over England. His record equalling 13-148 in the second Test in Melbourne capped one of the game’s great comebacks.
Reid appeared destined for the scrap heap after breaking down in Pakistan but returned to action after a steel bar was placed in his spine to hold together two troublesome vertebrae. He signalled he was ready for a return to international cricket with 11 wickets against SA in the Sheffield Shield match in Adelaide.
1989 – Terry Alderman, Cricket
On the 1989 Ashes tour of England Terry Alderman finished with 41 wickets at an average of 17.36, just short of his record of 42 wickets set in the 1981 series in England. He won Series and Man of the Match in the first Test at Headingley.
At home, Terry headed the first-class averages with 48 wickets at 20.94 and topped the Sheffield Shield averages with 35 wickets at 19.20.
1988 – Elspeth Denning (nee Clement), Hockey
Elspeth Clement, vice-captain of Australia’s triumphant gold medal women’s hockey team at the Seoul Olympics, bowed out of big hockey after a record 101 appearances for Australia. The resolute defender was outstanding and inspirational throughout the two-week Olympic tournament, especially in the semi-final and the final against host nation South Korea. In addition to her Olympic gold medal, she captained the WA team that won the national championship for the 36 th time in 42 years.
1987 – Ric Charlesworth, Hockey
After receiving the Order of Australia Medal in 1987, Ric Charlesworth was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame. He was part of the Australian Men’s Hockey team that had a 4-0 series win over Spain, including a 5-1 series opener in Perth. In the National Championships, Ric contributed to a Jags Powell Memorial Cup victory to Western Australia in May of 1987.
1987 – Tom Stachewicz, Swimming
In 1987 Tom broke the Commonwealth record in the 200m freestyle at the NOK International championship in East Berlin in a time of 1:49:32sec being the first Australian to break the 1:50sec time.
1987 – Peter Gilmour, Yachting
Peter Gilmour had five major international wins in six match-race series. The Liberty Cup in the US, the Lymington Cup in England, the Grundig Cup in France, the Australian Cup at Fremantle and the Nippon Cup in Japan all went to the man with nerves of steel at the wheel. As if all this were not enough, he went over to America and whipped the cream of the world’s skippers in the Congressional Cup in California. He won the 12-metre Challenge in Sydney and was deservedly named Australian Yachtsman of the Year.
1986 – Graham Marsh, Golf
In 1985-86 Graham Marsh won in England, Holland and Japan and helped Australia to victory in the inaugural $1 million Dunhill Cup at St Andrews.
1986 – Geoff Marsh, Cricket
After making his Test debut against India in December 1985, Geoff Marsh scored 118 against New Zealand at Eden Park in March, the first of three Test centuries for the 1986 calendar year. The second came against India in October (101), before his maiden Ashes Test in Brisbane in November saw him post scores of 56 and 110 runs in each innings.
Marsh made his one day international debut in January ’86, and made a brilliant 125 at the SCG against India in just his fourth stint in the middle. He posted a second ton later in the year with 104 on the tour of India in September.
1986 – Ric Charlesworth, Hockey
Ric Charlesworth’s career highlight came in 1986 when Australia won the World Cup in London. He was the leading goal-scorer of the tournament, voted best player and named in the World XI for the fifth time.
1985 – Graham Marsh, Golf
With a consistent year on the European Tour, Graham Marsh won The Lawrence Bay International Golf Classic in England in July – two strokes ahead of American Rick Hartmann. Just a few weeks later, his hot streak continued as he took out the Dutch Open in the Netherlands, with a one-stroke victory over Bernhard Langer.
Marsh went on to win Japan’s Tokai Classic in October of 1985.
1985 – Elizabeth Smylie, Tennis
A memorable 1985 for Liz Smylie started with a doubles victory at the US Virginia Slims Tournament, pairing with American Kathy Jordan for a straight-sets win in the final. They backed it up the following week by winning the Marco Open.
Victories followed at tournaments in Tokyo, Sydney and Melbourne, before the year – and her career – reached a high point when Smylie again partnered Jordan to take out the Wimbledon Women’s Doubles Championship. Overall, the year netted Smylie eight doubles titles, with a further four runners-up efforts.
1984 – Steve Malaxos, Football
23-year-old Claremont champion Steve Malaxos, earned a place in Football’s Hall of Fame with some outstanding exhibitions for club, State and country. He was part of a first ever three-way tie winner of the Sandover medal in 1984 tying with Peter Spencer and Michael Mitchell. In the same year, he won Claremont’s E.B. Cook Medal for the second successive season. His outstanding 1984 caught the eye of Hawthorn recruiters, who added him to their list for the ’85 VFL season.
Steve lead Western Australia to their second Australian championship in successive years and also captained Australia on a triumphant tour of Ireland, winning two of the three Tests.
1984 – Peter Evans, Swimming
Breaststroke specialist Peter Evans became the fifth swimmer to be named WA Sports, after winning the Australian 100m breaststroke championship to qualify for the Los Angeles Olympics – his second Olympic Games. The University of Arizona student clocked an Olympic record 1.02.87 in winning his heat of the 100m breaststroke. It was the first Olympic record in the pool by an Australian since the Games of 1972.
He won bronze in the Olympic 100m breaststroke final, and added another bronze medal to his collection as a member of Australia’s third-placed 4 x 100m medley relay team.
1984 – Graham Lillingston, Yachting
In 1984 Graham Lillingston capped an outstanding yachting career by winning the world Flying Fifteen championship in Ireland which was five years after a “near miss” in 1979 when runner-up for the title on the Swan River . Sailing in a borrowed boat and with Mike McKenzie as forward hand, Graham outsailed 58 skippers from 7 countries.
1983 – Steele Bishop, Cycling
Western Australia’s first world cycling champion, fitness fanatic Steele Bishop rode the race of his life in the final of the professional 5000m pursuit final in Zurich’s Oerlikon Stadium. The “Flying Fireman” caught his opponent, Switzerland ‘s 1980 Olympic gold medallist Robert Dill-Bundi, three laps from the finish, a feat thought impossible at that level of competition.
Steele showed his versatility by winning the five-day 1000m Griffin Tour on the road and two gold medals, a silver and a bronze at the national track championships. After winning the historic Westral Wheelrace for the sixth time, he retired – on top of the world. In 1983 Steele was awarded the Oppy Oscar for the best performance by an Australian cyclist, amateur or professional, in Australia.
1982 – Neil Brooks, Swimming
Neil Brooks excelled in freestyle sprints. He teamed with Mark Kerry, Mark Tonelli and Peter Evans to win the gold medal in the 4 x 100m medley relay at the Moscow Olympics in 1980. Neil swam the freestyle leg in a sizzling 49.86sec.
Powerfully built Neil Brooks also struck it rich at the 1982 Commonwealth Games in Brisbane . A member of Australia ‘s celebrated “Mean Machine” he won gold medals in three events – the 100m freestyle, and the 4 x 100m freestyle and medley relays.
1981 – Dennis Lillee, Cricket
In 1981 Dennis Lillee toured England to capture 39 wickets at 22.30 in the six Ashes Tests against England. The series included a devastating 7/89 at Kennington Oval. He won the man-of-the-match in the first and last Tests of the series, where his combination with fellow West Australian Terry Alderman delivered him career-best series figures.
Through the 1981 calendar year, Lillee took 85 Test wickets at 20.95, and 20 ODI wickets at 21.15.
Lillee was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) during the year.
1981 – Rodney Marsh, Cricket
Rodney Marsh became a history-making wicketkeeper during a colourful Test career spanning 14 years from 1970-1984. Initially selected for his ability with the bat, it was during 1981 – with the WA combination of Dennis Lillee and Terry Alderman at the peak of their powers – that Marsh found his greatest success as a gloveman. He took 52 catches from 13 Tests in 1981 – the best return of his career behind the stumps in the Test Match arena.
1981 – Sue Roberts, Powerlifting
In May 1981 at the World Championships in Hawaii , Sue Roberts attained World, National and State records in the Squat, lifting 140kgs. Sue was the best lifter for the 44-60kg classes.
Sue was the best female lifter at the State titles held in Perth during June 1981. Her 72.5kg Bench Press was a National & State record. Her Deadlift of 165kg was a World, National and State record. At the National Championships in Cairns , during 1981 Sue was the best female lifter. World, National and State records were attained in the Squat, lifting 147.5kgs. The Bench Press of 72.5kgs achieved for a National & State record.
1981 – Terry Alderman, Cricket
One of Terry Alderman’s eye-catching debuts was when he claimed 5-62 runs for Australia against England at Trent Bridge in 1981. In that series, Terry took an astonishing 42 wickets in the six Ashes Tests, including nine on debut. Combining brilliantly with fellow West Australian speedster Dennis Lillee, it was a measure of Alderman’s consistency that the 42 wickets set a record for the most taken in a series without taking 10 wickets in one match.
1980 – Kim Hughes, Cricket
Kim Hughes played a number of wonderful innings for Australia, but perhaps the defining stand of his career was his swashbuckling 117 (14 fours and three sixes) in the 1980 Centenary Test at Lords in August of that year. He followed up the first innings century with 84 in the second.
On the same tour of England, Hughes posted a career-high ODI score of 98 runs.
1980 – Lou Austin, Harness Racing
Reinsman Lou Austin captured the imagination of the WA public when he drove wonder pacer San Simeon to an Australasian record of 29 successive wins.
Austin, who taught San Simeon how to race and nursed him back to health after he nearly died of a virus, was also in the spider when the champion won the WA Pacing Derby, the Australasian Pacing Derby, the WA Benson and Hedges Cup and the $140,000 Interdominion Grand Final in Hobart, where he toyed with the best pacers from Australia and New Zealand.
1979 – Ric Charlesworth ***
Between 1972 and 1979 Ric Charlesworth played 1st Class cricket for Western Australia, captaining the team in 1979.
Ric represented WA 47 times, scoring 2327 runs with a highest score of 101 not out. Ric captained the WA cricket team on four occasions.
1979 – Kim Hughes, Cricket
Playing in just his eleventh Test match, Kim Hughes became the first Western Australian to captain an Australian Test team. He was also only the fifth Australian to compile 1000 Test runs in a calendar year. Enhancing his reputation as one of Australia ‘s most exciting batsmen, he scored 1152 runs in 14 Tests at an average of 48.00, posting centuries against the West Indies and India as well as a sparkling 99 in the first Test against England in Perth.
Hughes hit 154 in 160 balls to help Fremantle win the first-grade premiership, before the re-unification of the game after the World Series Cricket era saw him appointed vic-captain of Australia, under Greg Chappell, to the World Cup in England.
1979 – Barbara Wall, Squash
Globe-trotting Barbara Wall won the British Women’s Open Squash Championship at Wembley.
In the year of WA’s 150th Anniversary, Barbara’s superior fitness told when she rallied from two games down to beat Britain ‘s No 1 Sue Cogswell in the deciding fifth game.
1978 – Rob O’Sullivan, Yachting
Rob O’Sullivan convincingly won the Australian Championships conducted at Waterloo Bay, hosted by the Manly Sailing club. Series placings were 1,3,1,2,1 & 2 in a 67-boat fleet in moderate wind conditions.
In the following World Championships Rob won by a narrow margin of .3 of a point. A competitive 84 boats raced in the series and his worst place being sixth place with boats from 5 other countries and all States of Australia. In the same year, Rob went onto capture the State and club titles and Champion of Champions race.
1978 – Barbara Wall, Squash
Barbara Wall’s tournament victories in the Danish, Irish and Belgian Opens and the South African Champion of Champions events spurred her onto greater heights when she returned to London for the 1979 British Open as the No 8 seed, superbly fit and now dedicated to winning.
1977 – Graham Marsh, Golf
Graham Marsh captured the rich 1977 World Matchplay Championship at Wentworth, England, to go with wins in two lucrative Japanese events and the prestigious Lancome Trophy in France.
The year reached a high point with victory in the exclusive invitational event, The PGA Tour Heritage Classic. Marsh recording an 11-under-par 273 over the four rounds, to beat Americans Tom Watson and Ben Crenshaw by three strokes.
1977 – Dean Williams, Squash
1977 was a big year for Dean Williams. He won the Australian International Amateur title, 3rd consecutive State title, runner up South African Championships, won the Scottish Open, the Danish Open, the Swiss Open, the Monte Carlo Open, the Spanish open and was a semi-finalist in the British Championships.
Dean was the first Western Australian to represent Australia at the World Championships in Canada. He played as No 1 in team and captain, and was ranked No 3 World Amateur Champion.
1976 – Ric Charlesworth, Hockey
Ric Charlesworth won an Olympic silver medal in the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games, as part of Australia’s Men’s hockey team.
He was also part of Western Australia’s victorious Sheffield Shield cricket team of the 1976-77 season, as an opening batsman.
1976 – Dennis Lillee, Cricket
In the 1975-76 Australian summer, Dennis Lillee launched into the year and the West Indies with 27 wickets at 26.37, including a best return of 5/63.
1975 – John Gilmour, Athletics
John Gilmour, at age 56 won the 3000m and 5000m in the 55 years and over class at the World Veteran championships in Canada in August 1975. He also won the 1500m, 5000m and 10000m in the American Veteran championships the same month.
John holds nine world veteran records from 800m to the half-marathon, and is Australian Veteran champion at 800, 1500 and 10000 metres.
1975 – Libby Felton, Rifle Shooting
Libby Felton proved that rifle shooting is by no means a male stronghold any more by heading the field home to win the open championship by three points with a score of 347.20 out of the possible 355. In 1974 Libby was the first woman to win a Queen’s Prize in Australia and only second in the British Commonwealth with a top score of 348.31 out of a possible 355.
Libby was the only lady shooter to have won two Queens, having won the Queensland No 1 badge against the best shots in Australia in less than one year. Now considered the best of all time by not only winning two Queens in convincing fashion against Australia’s best but also she has won innumerable District Association Championships and gained 2 well merited Australian pockets.
1975 – Dennis Lillee, Cricket
After missing the 1973-74 season because of a stress fracture of the lower lumbar vertebrae, Dennis Lillee came back stronger and better than ever, teaming with Jeff Thomson to form one of modern cricket’s most devastating fast bowling duos. When England toured Australia in the 1974-75 season, the duo captured 58 wickets between them, leading the home side to a 4-1 Ashes Series win.
Lillee toured England in 1975 for the inaugural World Cup. He captured eight wickets in five matches, including 5/34 against Pakistan at Leeds.
1974 – Rod Marsh, Cricket
Rod Marsh’s dazzling performances in 1974-75 included an Australian record of 64 dismissals, 865 runs in first-class matches and a State record of nine dismissals that helped clinch the Sheffield Shield for WA.
1974 – Rob O’Sullivan, Yacthing
As the current club and State titleholder Rob O’Sullivan won the State selection series to represent WA in winning the 1973/74 Australian Moth Championship on Perth waters competing against 75 boats.
74 boats raced in the 1974 August World Championship series, conducted at Taby Yacht Club in Sweden, from ten different countries and Rob’s three-point lead in the last race was enough to win the Championships as the sail off last race was abandoned because of drifting conditions.
1973 – Margaret Court, Tennis
In a domination of world tennis, Margaret Court won more than half of all the Grand Slam contests of 1973, winning the Women’s Singles Championship at the Australian Open, French Open and US Open. She won the same three Grand Slam titles in Doubles the same year, and the WTA Tour Finals doubles event. Court was runner-up in the Mixed Doubles at the US Open.
Margaret Court finished 1973 as the world’s number 1 ranked female tennis player.
1973 – Roslyn Fisher (nee Noel), Hockey
Roslyn Noel was a member of the WA team from 1960 to 1973 and toured Malaysia in 1962 and America in 1963. She was also selected as a member of the Australian team touring in 1971 and 1973.
Roslyn was the Captain/Coach with the Australian Touring Team that toured Holland in 1973 winning 5 of the 8 games against 8 countries.
1973 – Rod Marsh, Cricket
In 1972-73 history-making wicket keeper/batsman Rod Marsh set records with 23 Test dismissals in England and a magnificent innings of 236 for WA against Pakistan in Perth.
Rod went on to score 118 for Australia against Pakistan in Adelaide, the first Test hundred by an Australian wicket keeper.
1973 – Graham Marsh, Golf
Trail-blazing golfer Graham Marsh’s tournament successes in Europe and Japan brought him his first sports star award and acclaim as the best golfer outside the United States.
1972 – Dennis Lillee, Cricket
On the 1972 Ashes Tour to England, Dennis Lillee terrorised the England batsmen, claiming 31 wickets at 17.67 – his return of 10/181 at Kennington going down as among the best match figures of his career.
Lillee’s standing as the best bowler from either team in the series saw him named as one of Wisden’s five cricketers of the year.
1972 – Rod Marsh, Cricket
Rod Marsh became an integral part of the Australian cricket team during the 1972 tour of England.
Late in the year, he became the first Australian keeper to hit a century, scoring 118 runs in the first Test against Pakistan at the Adelaide Oval.
1971 – Dennis Lillee, Cricket
The Adelaide Ashes Test of January 1971 saw Dennis Lillee make his International cricket debut, with an impressive 5/84 at 16.80 signalling the arrival of a once-in-a-lifetime bowler.
Later in the year, Lillee decimated a powerful World XI team in Perth that included the likes of Clive Lloyd and Sunil Gavaskar, by taking 8/29.
1971 – Gaye Teed (nee Switch), Netball
Gaye Switch was captain when the triumphant Australian team won the World Netball Championship in Jamaica in 1971 – the finest hour of Gaye’s long and distinguished career.
Gaye played a dominant role in helping Australia to regain the world crown from New Zealand.
1970 – Margaret Court, Tennis
After securing the Ladies championship at all four Grand Slam tournaments in 1970, Margaret Court became just the second woman to achieve the calendar year Grand Slam.
Margaret also claimed Women’s Doubles titles at both the Australian and US Open, and won the US Open Mixed doubles to make it 7 Grand Slam titles for the year.
1969 – Syd Lodge, Yachting
Syd Lodge was a member of a 2-man 16 foot Hornet Class racing yacht that won from a field of 48 yachts representing 7 countries at the Hayling Island , Portsmouth , UK World Champs. Syd went with a team of three others from Australia .
Syd was the second West Australian to win a world title in yachting – Rolly Tasker was the first. This win meant WA earned the right to defend the title on their home ground.
1969 – Margaret Court, Tennis
In the new Open Era of tennis, Margaret Court won the Ladies Singles Australian Open, French Open and US Open to be the dominant female player on the tour.
In Women’s Doubles, Margaret had victories at the Australian Open and Wimbledon, and was runner-up at both the French and US Opens. She also tasted victory in the Mixed Doubles, winning the Australian, French and US Open.
1968 – Brian Glencross, Hockey
As a member of Australia’s Men’s Hockey team, Brian Glencross was the leading goal scorer at the Mexico Olympic Games of 1968, with seven goals and scored Australia ‘s only goal in their 2-1 defeat by Pakistan in the final.
A powerful and accurate corner-hitter, Glencross captained Australia for the first time in 1968, the year he had the distinction of becoming the first Australian to be selected in an unofficial world team.
1968 – Lyn McKenzie (nee McClements), Swimming
Aged 17, Lyn McClements won Australia’s first Olympic butterfly gold medal, setting an Olympic record of 65.6sec in the 100m at the 1968 Mexico City Games, where she also won silver in the medley relay.
Lyn won the 100m butterly in her first appearance at a national championships in 1968, leading directly to her selection for Mexico City . Four months after the Games, she won both the 100m and 200m butterfly titles at the Australian championships in Perth.
1967 – Brian Griffin, Lacrosse
Brian Griffin was only 16 years of age when he made his A-grade debut for Nedlands Subiaco in 1957, the youngest player to compete in a senior club team. In 1958, aged 17, he played for the WA U/21 side and was the leading goal scorer.
Brian was an attacker of the highest quality, first representing Australia in 1962 and was captain for the inaugural World Series in Toronto in 1967 when he was voted most valuable player. American experts described Brian as the world’s best player in 1967.
1967 – Bill Walker, Australian Rules Football
Bill Walker won the Sandover Medal as WA’s fairest and best and fairest player for the third successive year for his performances over the 1967 season.
He also won the Simpson Medal for his performance playing for WA against South Australia in the same year.
1967 – Lynne Bates (nee Watson), Swimming
One of the world’s fastest backstroke swimmers, Lynne Watson won three Australian junior titles and followed with four gold medals and seven national records at the national senior championships in 1967/68.
Earlier, she captured no fewer than 17 titles at the WA championships and moved into third place on the Australian all-time list for 100m freestyle with her time of 61.9sec.
1966 – David Dickson, Swimming
At the Commonwealth Games in 1966 David Dickson won gold medals in the Men’s 440 Yards and 880 Yards Freestyle Relays and a bronze medal in the Men’s 110 yards Freestyle.
1966 – Phil Coulson, Harness Racing
During the 1966/67 season Phil Coulson was the leading driver in Perth with 47 winners and he also won the Perth Trainers Premiership that season with 41 winners. His third successive win in each of those awards.
Phil drove Binshaw, the first WA bred horse to win the Inter Dominion in the1967 Inter Dominion held at Gloucester Park Binshaw also won the 1966 Christmas Gift that season.
Phil also trained Hy Craft, Lord Mina and Color Glo to win the WA Pacing Cup in 1964, 1965 and 1966 and he drove Lord Mina and Color Glo in their WA Cup wins.
1966 – Barry Cable, Australian Rules Football
Barry Cable, a roving maestro, was always determined to be the best at his art; a dedicated footballer whose total devotion to perfection was never questioned. He won the Tassie Medal for the best player at the Australian National Football Carnival, earning him selection in the All Australian team.
As a player Cable worked relentlessly at his football skills, developing the art of short-passing with a deadly stab kick and immaculate handball with both hands.
His skills came to the fore in the 1966 WAFL Grand Final, when a performance that earned him the Simpson Medal for best on ground in the Grand Final helped the Perth Football Club to a premiership.
1965 – John Ryan, Swimming
John Ryan was a champion surf and pool swimmer who competed at the 1964 Tokyo Olympics where he won a bronze medal in the 4 x 100m freestyle and was a semi-finalist in the 100m freestyle events.
John also won gold in surf belt races and was a member of the Australian Surf Life Saving Team.
1965 – Peter Kelly, Cricket
Peter Kelly was an outstanding opening batsman, who in November became the first Australian to score a century in each innings of a match against the MCC ( England ) in Australia . The 24-year-old Sydney-born right-hander made 119 and 108 against the MCC, 132 and 103 against NSW, 85 against South Australia and 80 against Victoria.
That summer he harvested 904 first-class runs at an average of 56.5 and shared in a record WA stand of 203 for the second wicket against NSW. He also made 99 in a two-day match against Tasmania in Hobart.
1965 – Bill Walker, Australian Rules Football
Bill Walker played an important support role to captain/coach Haydn Bunton in the Swans hat trick of premierships (1961, 1962, 1963 and blossomed as a rover in his own right to win the Sandover Medal as WA’s fairest and best player in 1965.
1964 – Graham McKenzie, Cricket
Graham McKenzie, aged 23, was Australia ‘s leading wicket-taker in tests against England , Pakistan and India .
The friendly and modest young man also became the quickest Australian to 100 Test wickets, reaching that goal in December, three years and 165 days after his debut for Australia.
1963 – Joyce Bennett, Athletics
Joyce Bennett competed in the Commonwealth Games in Perth in 1962 winning a silver medal in the 220-yard final and gold in the 110-yard sprint relay.
Early in 1963 Joyce won the 220-yard sprint held at the WA State titles and the National titles and a bronze in the 110-yard sprint.
1963 – David Dickson, Swimming
At the 1962 Commonwealth Games David Dickson won gold medals in the Men’s 440 yards Freestyle Relay and the 440 yards Medley Relay Races. He won a bronze medal in the Men’s 110 yards Freestyle.
1963 – Bob Marshall, Billiards
Bob Marshall was invited to India in 1963 and won both national titles for billiards and snooker. His highest break was 1056 made in 49 minutes and he averaged 100 or more in a two-hour session on 34 occasions.
1962 – Bob Marshall, Billiards
Bob Marshall carved a reputation of being a wizard with the cue dominating amateur billiards before and after World War 11, winning the world championship four times (1936, 38, 51 & 62) and runner up in 1952 and 1954.
Bob was recognised as one of the most prolific and consistent high scorers in the game. His many world records included a break of 702 in 37 minutes in the final of the 1953 Australian championship.
1962 – Dixie Willis, Athletics
Dixie Willis achieved two world records in 1962 in the 880 yards and 800m events at the women’s track and field championships. Dixie won gold for the 880 yards at the Perth Commonwealth Games.
1962 – Haydn Bunton, Australian Rules Football
Appointed senior coach of Swan Districts Football club in 1961, Haydn Bunton took the team from its bottom dwelling position of the previous fifteen years to its first Premiership in 1961 and once again in 1962, winning the Sandover medal in the same year.
1961 – David Dickson, Swimming
David Dickson was a champion sprint swimmer and topped the poll for some outstanding performances in Australia and overseas. He was part of the 4 x 200 freestyle relay team who finished with a bronze medal – behind the US and Japan – at the Rome Olympic Games.
In 1961 David led a 15-man Australian team on a tour of Asia and Europe , during which time he contested 23 races and won them all.
1960 – Bob Simpson, Cricket
Bob Simpson came to WA from NSW in 1956, a move that sent him on his way to an illustrious four years playing 1st class cricket for WA.
Twenty-four matches played at this level saw him with an average of 79.67 runs and his highest score was 236 runs. His average run score as a Sheffield Shield player during 1959-60 was a remarkable 300.66 runs.
1959 – Brian Foley, Australian Rules Football
In 1959 playing for West Perth Brian Foley won the Sandover medal by 10 votes, club fairest and best, sportsman of the year, the Daily News and West Australian footballer-of-the-year awards, the Ampol and Valencia awards. Brian also won the Pelaco Oscar – an award decided by the votes of opposing players.
1958 – Herb Elliott, Athletics
Herb Elliott’s first sub-four-minute mile was recorded on 28 January 1958 at 3min 59.9sec.
The fastest mile of Elliott’s career was set in Dublin in 1958 when he was timed at 3min 54.5sec. Herb won the Helms Award as the outstanding Australasian athlete for 1958.
1957 – Shirley de la Hunty (nee Strickland), Athletics
The first Australian women to win a track and field medal at the Olympics, Shirley de la Hunty’s Olympic tally of seven medals for athletics remains unequalled.
She also won the Helms Award as the outstanding Australasian athlete of 1956 and the following year was awarded the MBE in the Queen’s Honours List.
1956 – Morna Pearce, Hockey
Morna Pearce was the winner of the inaugural Sportsman of the Year. Morna represented WA from 1951-56 and was selected as a member of the Australian team for the same period.
Morna was the Australian Team Captain in 1956 in Sydney for an IFWHA International Tournament against 30 nations achieving 1-3 vs England; 1-0 vs Holland; 2-0 vs Canada; 8-0 vs Ireland; 0-0 vs Scotland; 0-1 vs South Africa.