Top gong to gifted Uebergang

CLOSE COUNT: Ipswich Eagles’ Best and Fairest player Matthew Uebergang (right) and award runner-up Chris Devlin accept their trophies at the Ipswich Turf Club on Saturday night.
CLOSE COUNT: Ipswich Eagles’ Best and Fairest player Matthew Uebergang (right) and award runner-up Chris Devlin accept their trophies at the Ipswich Turf Club on Saturday night. Contributed

IPSWICH'S leading Aussie rules player Matthew Uebergang held out spirited challenges from Chris Devlin and Aaron Fortescue to win the Eagles' Best and Fairest award.

Given the versatile Uebergang is being chased by higher competition clubs, winning the top honour and Players' Player trophy was hardly surprising.

However, club president Michael Podolak said the ever-dependable Devlin was just two votes behind for the main award.

Fortescue, who won the award for Most Consistent player, was also well in the hunt at the Eagles presentation function at the Ipswich Turf Club on Saturday night.

"It was probably one of our closest best-and-fairest counts we've had in quite a few years,'' Podolak said.

"Matt has been very good for the club.

"This year, he played in a variety of positions. He even had a game at fullback for a couple of matches just to shut down some key forwards for other teams and did a great job doing that for us as well.''

Podolak said while the club appreciated having Uebergang playing SEQAFL Division 3 footy, no one would stand in his way.

"We encourage everyone to play at the highest level they can,'' Podolak said.

"We've had boys go over to Western Magpies this year because they wanted to play Division 1.

"We're never going to hold anyone back. I don't think it serves the game or serves AFL in Ipswich either.''

Podolak confirmed this season's coaches Mick Rush (Seniors) and Craig Harley (Reserves) had re-nominated for next season. Applications close the end of this month.

However, the St Edmund's College PE teacher is stepping down as president at the AGM to concentrate on his young family.

Other major award winners on Saturday night included Nathan Hart and Mark Kennedy.

Centre half forward Hart won the Reserve grade Best and Fairest and Players' Player awards.

Kennedy, 40, collected the "Most Courageous'' award for his tenacity backing up every week.

Honour board

Ipswich Eagles Australian Football Club awards 2013

Seniors: Best and Fairest - Matthew Uebergang. Runner-up: Chris Devlin. Players' Player: Matthew Uebergang. Most improved: Daniel Horton. Coaches award: Matthew Gordon. Leading goalkicker: Adam Gillespie (54, third overall in competition). Most consistent: Aaron Fortescue. Best 1st year player: Matt Livingstone. Most courageous: Mark Kennedy.

Reserves: Best and Fairest: Nathan Hart. Runner-up: Ryan Plane. Players' Player: Nathan Hart. Most improved: Justyn Bilston. Coaches award: Kym Mansell. Leading goalkicker: Matt Harley (63, top kicker in competition). Most consistent: Nick Henwood. Best utility: Tyson Watts. Player of finals: Grant Theelan.

Service awards: Presidents Award - Chris Madson and Andrew Thompson. Five years service: David Read. Appreciation awards: Michael Rush, Craig Harley, Damien Brereton, Luke Konstanciak, Chris Devlin, Phil Godfrey, Cameron Hindom, Lance Konstanciak, Luke Crowel, Mark Kennedy, Michelle Devlin.



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