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Maori Sports Awards Honours Equine Champions

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Maori Sports Awards Honours Equine Champions

A legendary rodeo champion and a top racehorse trainer will be inducted into the Maori Sports Hall of Fame at the 2005 NATIONAL MAORI SPORTS AWARDS ceremony in Auckland later this month (Saturday December 17).

The home of Maori sport, Maori Television is the official broadcaster of the prestigious black-tie event on Sunday December 18 from 5.30 PM to 7.30 PM.

Rodeo veteran Mervyn Church from Rotorua and horseman Eric Ropiha of Woodville will join an illustrious list of Maori athletes and administrators who have been inducted into the Maori Sports Hall of Fame. They include Joseph Warbrick, Ruia Morrison-Davy, Opai Asher, Millie Khan, George Nepia, Tori Reid, Albie Pryor and Margaret Hiha.

Awarded an ONZM for services to rodeo, Mervyn Church is the head of a renowned family that has dominated the sport for more than a decade. Prominent horse trainer Eric Ropiha, who is also the recipient of an ONZM, has produced a host of top-class gallopers over more than three decades as well as excelling in the sport of equestrian.

Former Silver Fern Jenny-May Coffin and New Zealand Warriors’ Wairangi Koopu from sports show CODE will front Maori Television’s broadcast while movie star Temuera Morrison and media personality Stacey Daniels will host the ceremony at the Telstra Clear Pacific Events Centre.

Te Tohu Taakaro o Aotearoa Trust will present a range of awards including administrator, coach, umpire/referee, team, disabled sportsperson, sports media, junior and senior sportsman and sportswoman and world champions as well as thousands of dollars worth of sports scholarships.

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Champion golfer Michael Campbell, All Black Piri Weepu and rugby league sensation Benji Marshall are finalists for senior Maori sportsman of the year while the senior female finalists include squash player Shelley Kitchen, surfer Lisa Hurunui and tennis player Leanne Baker.

Campbell will also receive a Maori World Champion award on the night along with wood-chopper Jason Wynyard, wool-handlers Joanne Kumeroa and Christina Rimene, powerlifter Rangimaria Brightwater-Wharf and 12-year-old world BMX champion Trent Woodcock.

A highlight on the Maori sporting calendar, catch the 2005 NATIONAL MAORI SPORTS AWARDS on Maori Television on Sunday December 18 from 5.30 PM to 7.30 PM.

ENDS

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION FOR 2005 NATIONAL MAORI SPORTS AWARDS

Year 2005
Censor General Exhibition (G)
Duration 120-minute sports special
Language Maori and English

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