Phippard takes top ANZ umpire award 

Rd 12, Swifts v Thunderbirds

The Australian Netball Awards for the ANZ Championship have been announced with NSW product Michelle Phippard recognised as Umpire of the Year. 

Phippard umpired all 17 rounds in the 2016 season, including the Finals Series and her first ANZ Championship Grand Final. She umpired 60 ANZ Championship games since her national league debut in 2012.

As part of the changes to the national calendar, it was agreed by the Board of Netball Australia that the Australian Netball Awards (ANAs) should be held directly alongside the Suncorp Super Netball season, with the exception of the Australian ANZ Championship Awards.

In more good news for Netball NSW, 2016 NSW Swifts defender Sharni Layton was crowned Australia’s ANZ Championship Player of the Year for the second year in a row, after a dominating season.

Layton finished the 2016 Trans-Tasman Netball League season as the top defender with a league-high 66 intercepts, 106 deflections, 94 gains and 33 defensive rebounds. The Australian ANZ Championship Player of the Year was determined by player vote.

Queensland Firebirds’ head coach Roselee Jencke was named Australia’s ANZ Championship Coach of the Year after leading her Firebirds to back-to-back premierships in a thrilling win over the Swifts in extended extra-time.

“All three award recipients performed exceptionally during the 2016 season,” stated Netball Australia Acting CEO Marne Fechner.

“The trio continue to raise the bar, conducting themselves with integrity, drive and passion. They are wonderful role models for our game.”

The remainder of the 2016 awards have been deferred, with a date for the 2017 ANAs yet to be confirmed.

2016 Australian Netball Award recipients

Australian ANZ Championship Player of the Year: Sharni Layton, NSW Swifts
Australian ANZ Championship Coach of the Year: Roselee Jencke, Queensland Firebirds
Australian ANZ Championship Umpire of the Year: Michelle Phippard

*Article courtesy of Netball Australia