Kyle Hamilton knew all about the sporting history at Tauranga Boys' College, and the array of household names etched on to the Sportsman of the Year Trophy.

But he did not rate his chances of joining them despite being one of the obvious candidates to be awarded the prestigious award at the Titans Sports Prizegiving.

So he was pleasantly surprised to hear his name read out ahead of a roll call of outstanding boys this year.

Tauranga Boys' College Sportsman of the Year Kyle Hamilton. Photo / Andrew Warner
Tauranga Boys' College Sportsman of the Year Kyle Hamilton. Photo / Andrew Warner

Hamilton, 18, had four good reasons to win the top award. He represented New Zealand under-20 team in volleyball, captained the senior basketball side, was part of the sevens team that finished third equal at the national Condor Sevens and was the senior athletics champion after dominating several track and field events.

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With a record like that, there was little doubt his name would be engraved on the cup alongside one of his heroes and another Welcome Bay product, Peter Burling.

"It means heaps winning that. I did not expect it at all to be named and even mum and dad were speechless and everything. There are so many top sportsmen at school it was quite a shock to get it really," Hamilton said.

There were plenty of highlights among the four sports he excelled in, but Hamilton has narrowed it down to his personal best moments.

"Definitely going to the USA High Performance (volleyball) camps in July for 12 days. We played against all the top USA players. That was a good experience to see how good they are," he said.

"In the basketball team, we had seven Year 11s, and we still got sixth at regionals. We had a new coach come in three weeks into the season, and with such a young team it turned out alright.

"Condors was real cool because it was televised. The whole atmosphere and everything felt like a proper sevens tournament. Coming third was even better. In athletics, I did 200m, shot put, discus, long jump and triple jump. The main achievement was getting that first place overall because there were people who practice in athletics as their chosen sport and I was still able to beat some of them."

The Tauranga Boys' award completes a hat-trick of final year awards he has won, after earlier success at Selwyn Ridge Primary and Tauranga Intermediate School.

Hamilton starts a science degree focusing on marine biology at Auckland University next year. He will continue with volleyball at the same club he played for this year, with players based in Auckland and Tauranga.

Like so many Year 13 school leavers this is a time of mixed emotions for Hamilton, having come to the end of a five-year journey.

"Well there was a feeling of happiness and also feeling sad. Sad that you have to leave but happy that you are going into something new to experience.

"You feel quite relieved having finished school, but it is definitely something I will definitely miss and the people too. I have many people to thank, like my coaches over the years, and particularly my family who were always on the sideline supporting me."