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NZDF Sports Awards Winners Announced

Able Steward Deena-Ranganui Puketapu (Royal New Zealand Navy) received the Individual Sports Person of the Year and Outstanding Sports Achievement awards.
Able Steward Deena-Ranginui Puketapu (Royal New Zealand Navy) received the Individual Sports Person of the Year and Outstanding Sports Achievement awards.

14 June 2017

Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) Able Steward Deena-Ranginui Puketapu was a double winner at the annual New Zealand Defence Force Sports Awards last night.

Able Steward Puketapu, from Napier,  won the Individual Sports Person of the Year and the Outstanding Sports Achievement awards.

Sportsmen and women from throughout the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) gathered to celebrate sporting excellence and acknowledge achievement from the 2016 calendar year at  the awards at Trentham Race Course.

The Chief of Defence Force, Lieutenant General Tim Keating, said members of the NZDF were collectively strong and proud and strived to be the best no matter what their abilities were.

“The New Zealand Defence Force Sports Awards celebrate the achievements of our sports men and women, managers and administrators,” Lieutenant General Keating said. 

“Sport in the New Zealand Defence Force has an important value in promoting personal qualities in players, such as the discipline required to work as part of a team, the rivalry generated on the sports field grows adaptability and innovation.” 

Able Steward Puketapu’s citation noted that she had a high level of performance in her sports and is talented in many sports. She has made a significant contribution to sport within the RNZN and participates in all her sports with sportsmanship, competitiveness and charisma.

Sports Official of the Year went to Royal New Zealand Air Force Wing Commander Steve Hancock and Sports Team of the Year was awarded to the NZDF Men’s Softball Team. New Zealand Army Major Glen Whitton received the NZDF Sports Council Chairpersons Award.

The NZDF Colour award was presented this year to New Zealand Army Captain Wayne Small.

Captain Small has completed more than 29 years of dedicated service to NZDF sport as a player, coach and official. He has established himself as a key and influential figure in NZDF softball.

His citation noted that he relentlessly demonstrates high levels of commitment, dedication, professionalism and loyalty to NZDF softball at all levels. He has enhanced the reputation of the NZDF and NZDF sport through his long-standing service.

Award Winners:

• Individual Sports Person of the Year – Able Steward Deena-Ranginui Puketapu (Royal New Zealand Navy)
• Outstanding Sports Achievement – Able Steward Deena-Ranginui Puketapu (Royal New Zealand Navy)
• Sports Official of the Year – Wing Commander Steve Hancock (Royal New Zealand Air Force)
• Sports Team of the Year – NZDF Men’s Softball Team
• NZDF Sports Council Chairperson Award – Major Glen Whitton (New Zealand Army)
• NZDF Colour Award – Captain Wayne Small (New Zealand Army)

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