A host of talented athletes from across the country have been named as TASS Stars Awards finalists in recognition of their achievements in sport and study in the past year. 15 TASS-supported athletes from a range of sports have been shortlisted from scores of nominations outlining the athletes’ accomplishments both on and off the field.
Nominations were made across five categories designed to celebrate the attributes of a dual career athlete: Most Determined, Most Inspirational, Most Committed, Most Potential and Athlete of the Year.
Modern pentathlon’s Joshua Hood, beach volleyball player Issa Batrane and boccia athlete Rafael Young have been selected in the Most Determined category, while snowsport’s Tom Greenway, powerlifter Liam Mcgarry and gymnast Jaydon Paddock are named as TASS’s Most Inspirational athletes this year.
In the Most Committed category, netball ace Sophie Drakeford-Lewis, fencer Billy Shepherd and footballer Lucy Thomas are in the running, with javelin athlete Harry Hughes, sailor Matilda Nicholls and modern pentathlete Olivia Green all shortlisted for the Most Potential award.
Netball is represented in force in the Athlete of the Year category, with two England Futures players, Amy Carter and Razia Quashie, in contention; with the third and final spot taken by rising star in table tennis, Charlotte Bardsley.
An independent panel of judges including triple jump world record holder, Jonathan Edwards, Olympic medallist Samantha Murray and 2018 Star of the Year winner, Maria Tsaptsinos, have now been tasked with determining the five winners.
All 15 finalists are invited to join senior representatives from the TASS network to celebrate their achievements at the TASS 15th Anniversary Reception on Wednesday 26 June where the winners will be revealed and presented with a TASS Stars Awards prize.
TASS National Director, Guy Taylor said: “Since TASS was launched in 2004, we’ve supported hundreds of incredible athletes each year – and 2019 is no exception. Once more, the TASS Stars Awards aims to recognise athletes who are not only outstanding sportspeople, but have also accomplished something great in their pursuits alongside sport.
"In our milestone 15th year, we hope to highlight the achievements of those athletes who continue to prove that sport and study can be a winning combination.”
Awarded to a TASS athlete who has been adaptable, overcome challenges or demonstrated resilience in order to pursue their sport and/or study.
Joshua Hood (Modern pentathlon/Hartpury University and Hartpury College)
Issa Batrane (Beach volleyball/Bournemouth University)
Rafael Young (Boccia/University of Manchester)
Awarded to a TASS athlete who possesses infectious enthusiasm and a positive attitude, has shown creativity in their sport and/or study, or has demonstrated sportsmanship.
Tom Greenway (Snowsport/University of Birmingham)
Liam Mcgarry (Powerlifting/Bournemouth University)
Jaydon Paddock (Gymnastics/University of Birmingham)
Awarded to a TASS athlete who has shown dedication to both study and/or sport, including excellent time management and balancing demands.
Sophie Drakeford-Lewis (Netball/University of Bath)
Billy Shepherd (Fencing/University of Nottingham)
Lucy Thomas (Women’s football/University of Hertfordshire)
Awarded to a TASS athlete who is deemed to be a “one to watch” in the future in either their sport and/or study.
Harry Hughes (Athletics/University of Essex)
Matilda Nicholls (Sailing/University of Southampton)
Olivia Green (Modern pentathlon/University of Bath)
Athlete of the Year
Awarded to a TASS athlete in recognition of their outstanding achievement this year in their sport and/or study.
Amy Carter (Netball/University of Manchester)
Razia Quashie (Netball/University of Hertfordshire)
Charlotte Bardsley (Table tennis/University of Birmingham)