03 Dec 2020
The first volleyballer is being introduced into the NSW Hall of Champions, alongside a Socceroos hero, Formula 1 champion, world-class surfer and an Olympic kayaker in 2020.
Every year since 1979, athletes from New South Wales that have achieved the highest level in their sporting field are nominated and selected to appear in this sports museum that comes to life with memorabilia, photos and nostalgic moments.
The sporting players gracing the NSW Hall of Champions this year include Kerri Pottharst, volleyball; Harry Williams, football; Mark Webber, motor sports; Mick Fanning, surfing and Naomi Flood, kayaking.
Acting Minister for Sport Geoff Lee was thrilled to induct the 2020 sports superstars.
“The NSW Hall of Champions is a fantastic way to pay homage to NSW’s most elite athletes, who have gone above and beyond in their specialised field”, Dr Lee said.
“Highlighting these sporting achievements through the exhibition at Sydney Olympic Park aims to educate and inspire the future generation, helping them realise that nothing is beyond their reach,” Dr Lee said.
The Champions join over 383 sportspeople from 56 different sporting backgrounds, including sporting icons such as Sir Donald Bradman, Dawn Fraser, Shane Gould and Dally Messenger and more recently Layne Beachley and Louise Sauvage.
This year, Rugby Union’s Mark Ella AM is celebrating an elevation to Legend status, making him the first Rugby Union Legend and twenty third Legend in the Hall overall.
The Legend status, introduced in 2007, recognises those champions who represent the greatest of the great in their field.
Nominated by NSW Hall of Champions Selection Committee members Alan Whelpton AO and Alan Davidson AM MBE, Mark Ella has been named Legend for his lifelong contribution to Australian Rugby Union and outstanding career, regarded as one of the greatest rugby players Australia ever producer, if not the best.
“After considering all past Legends and looking at the Sports successes I and Alan Davidson MBE AM both agreed that Mark Ella would be an excellent nomination for Legend”, Mr Whelpton said.
“We are excited and delighted to welcome Mark Ella AM as the latest Legend in NSW Hall of Champions”, said Mr Whelpton.
Upon receiving this recognition, the iconic Wallabies captain said he was “honored and delighted to be considered a Legend.”
The NSW Hall of Champions is a free exhibition located at the Quaycentre in Sydney Olympic Park. Find out more