Basketball: Legends inducted in Hall of Fame at Basketball Awards

Corey Webster playing for the Tall Blacks against the United States. Photo / Getty Images
Corey Webster playing for the Tall Blacks against the United States. Photo / Getty Images

Excellence and outstanding achievements in New Zealand basketball were recognised this evening at the Basketball New Zealand Awards ceremony, held in Wellington.

Basketball New Zealand Chief Executive, Iain Potter, said the awards recognise some of the dedicated individuals throughout the country who embody the true spirit of basketball.

"Basketball in New Zealand is continuing to see strong growth, and that is partly due to the likes of those who support and love the game. Our Annual awards recognise the achievements of people within the basketball community, and individuals who help make our game better, stronger and so enjoyable to be a part of."

This was also the first year that Basketball New Zealand established the Basketball New Zealand Hall of Fame, which Potter says was long overdue and is why there were 14 people included in this inaugural year.

"We are building the awards each year and felt it was important to establish the Hall of Fame to recognise the history and prestige of our sport. If you look at the inductees, and read about their achievements and dedication, there's an impressive group there. In part, this is to recognise them, but also to invest New Zealand's basketball history and to tell that story for years to come."

Cedric Cudby Volunteer Award - Darrel Flynn-Thompson
Darryl Flynn-Thompson began his basketball career through the Canterbury Basketball Association (CBA), namely with the Hotshots basketball club, where he was a player and then president for 10 years. His administrative talents with well-utilised by CBA, where he was a Board Member for 28 years and Vice-president for eight years, and on CBA's Competition Committee for 20 years.

Flynn-Thompson was also a committee member for the Canterbury Basketball Official's Association for 18 years and President for 12 years. He was also on the New Zealand Basketball Foundation's Board in the 1990's.

In 2003 Flynn-Thompson was made a Life member of CBOA in 2003, and then the following year was honoured with another life membership, this time with the CBA.
Flynn-Thompson's volunteerism extended from the office, on to the court, where he started refereeing in 1974 and is still doing so today. In 2009, Flynn-Thompson was a World Masters Games' referee in Sydney, a regular referee at National Tournaments since the late 1980's, and he also referees for wheelchair basketball. All this experience is often tapped into by up and comers, in his role as ref-educator and mentor for young referees. If that isn't enough, he is said to also ensure these young referees are fed and watered, usually by digging into his own pockets to buy food and drinks for the referees every weekend.

Ian Goodwin Services to Officiating Award - Rae Garland
Rae Garland hails from the Otago Basketball Association where she was recently made a life member for her tireless contribution to basketball in Otago. Mrs Garland coordinates referees for all club and school basketball, as well as for Basketball New Zealand affiliated tournaments held in Dunedin. Along with her husband, she officiates over 100 matches every season and assists in coordinating rules sessions from senior level through to a grassroots education programme called Kiwi-Hoops. For more than 25 years Mrs Garland has crewed the local scores bench and continues to manage it for major fixtures.

Carolyn Grey Female Coach of the Year - Leanne Walker
Leanne Walker's basketball career has gone all the way to becoming one the great New Zealand Tall Ferns, which naturally led to coaching. She had a very successful 2015 where she led two teams to National Tournament victories. The first was with the Waikato National Under 15 Girls team, who were triumphant at the Girls Under 15s Nationals. Later in the year Leanne coached the St Peter's School senior girls team, who won the prestigious National Secondary Schools Girls AA Championships.

Keith Mair Male Coach of the Year - Anthony Corban
2015 was a busy year for Anthony Corban. He coached two regional teams that both won National titles for Waikato, the under 17 Girls' National Championship and the Under 19 Women's National Championship. His pinnacle achievement for the year was coaching the gold winning men's team of the FIBA Under 18 3x3 World Championships held in Debrecen, Hungary. This was the second time Corban had coached a World Champion team, having secured the same title in 2011 in Rimini, Italy. Later in 2015 Corban coached the New Zealand Men's and Women's 3x3 teams at the FIBA Oceania 3x3 Championships in Australia, with both teams finishing an admirable second.

The McGloughlin Trophy for Female Junior Player of the Year - Krystal Leger-Walker
For the second year in a row Krystal Leger-Walker has been awarded the Female Junior Player of the Year, proving herself to be one of New Zealand's unfaltering junior talents. Krystal was awarded Most Valuable Player at the 2015 Secondary School National Championships and again at the Under 19 Nationals. She was a National Representative in the Under 18 3x3 team, which competed at the FIBA Under 18 3x3 World Championships in Debrecen, Hungary, finishing 12th in the world.
Krystal is currently touring with the Tall Ferns in their lead up to the Rio Olympics Qualification Tournament.

The Ambassador Trophy for Male Junior Player of the Year - Tai Wynyard
For the second year running, Tai Wynyard has won Male Junior Player of the Year. Tai's 2015 started by winning the Australian NBL as a member of the Breakers squad. In June he travelled to Debrecen, Hungary, to compete in the FIBA U18 3x3 World Championships, taking home not only the gold medal, but also the award for the tournament's Most Valuable Player. Later in the year Tai was again applauded for his efforts at the same 3x3 World Championships by being named as the player with the best 3x3 Play of the Year, for a block in the Final. At home his school team, Rangitoto College, won the AA Secondary School National Championships title, where he was also presented with the Tournament MVP award. Tai was again selected as a Tall Black in 2015 and travelled to China where they won the 2015 Stankovic Continental Cup. He also played for the Tall Blacks against Australia in the FIBA Oceania Championship series and later in the year received a full athletic scholarship to one of the most distinguished NCAA Division 1 Basketball Colleges in the United States, University of Kentucky.

Female Player of the Year - Kalani Purcell
Kalani Purcell had a standout year in 2015 beginning by playing for Brigham Young University in the USA in the West Coast Conference (WCC). Her performances resulted with her being awarded the Newcomer of the Year Award and then again honoured by being named in the All-WCC Women's first team. The U.S. accolades kept coming when she was named in the NJCAA Division 1 Women's Basketball First Team All-America, and as a result became the most decorated player in Blue Dragon Women's basketball history. During the College season she set a single-season record for points scored (684), total field goals (275), total rebounds (443), rebounding average (12) and double-doubles (27). Kalani was awarded Most Valuable Player for both the Jayhawk West Conference and the Region VI Tournament. She also played for the Tall Ferns in the 2015 FIBA Oceania Olympic Qualifier tournament against Australia and later in a series against Japan. Purcell is currently touring with the Tall Ferns in their lead up to the Rio Olympics Qualification Tournament.

Male Player of the Year - Corey Webster
Corey Webster was the Breakers leading point scorer with 15.5 points per game, leading to the Breakers winning their fourth Australia NBL Championship in 2015. He was also the leading scorer for the Tall Blacks with 19.5 points per game in the 2015 FIBA Oceania Olympic Qualifying Tournament against Australia. He played professionally for Mega Leks in the Serbian Super League and earned an invitation to the NBA Indiana Pacers training camp. In September 2015 he signed with the New Orleans Pelicans NBA team and played three pre-season games before returning to play for the Breakers.

Long Service Award - Pauline Patterson
Pauline Patterson was recognised for her 50 years of dedicated service to basketball. Her love of basketball began as a player for Aranui High School in 1965. She has since been a coach, referee, manager, treasurer, secretary, tour co-ordinator, tournament administrator, director, board member, life member, regional co-ordinator, and member of many committees and sports organisations.

Basketball New Zealand Hall of Fame
This is the first year Basketball New Zealand has started a Hall of Fame for basketball, to recognise people who have made a distinguished contribution to the sport, with inductees in four categories: Coach, Player, Technical Official and Contributor.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Player - Irone Brough
Irone Brough was a member of the New Zealand Women's Basketball teams in 1950 and then again as the foremost Captain of the team from 1957 through to 1960. Irone later went on to coach the team in 1965 and 1967. At an administrative level Irone was on the executive of the New Zealand Women's Indoor Basketball Association and the New Zealand Basketball Federation. At a local level, Irone was involved in the administration of Nelson basketball for many years.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Contributor - Zena Gay
In 1946 Zena Gay became the President of the New Zealand Women's Indoor Basketball Association, only one year after the Association's inception. She continued this role through to 1972, when the Association was merged with the New Zealand Men's Basketball Association. She was the inaugural Vice President of the newly formed New Zealand Basketball Federation and served a further six years on the executive committee. She managed the 1958, 1960 and 1964 New Zealand Women's Basketball teams. In 1970 she received the British Empire Medal (BEM) for services to community, especially for women's basketball. Her contribution is also recognised through the Basketball New Zealand award that is named after her, which recognises notable contribution to women's basketball.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Technical Official - Maurice McDougall
Canterbury's Maurice McDougall was the National Referee Manager and Rules Interpreter from 1960 to 1970. He was also Chief Referee at national tournaments from 1960 to 1970. McDougall also represented New Zealand for basketball in the 1950's.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Player - Allan Bruce
Allan Bruce was a founding member and captain of the international squad formed in the late 1940's, which is now known as the Tall Blacks. He played from 1949 to 1953 and captained the team in 1957 and 1958; his last year was in 1959. Allan also played for the English basketball team from 1954 to 1956. He played 16 internationals which included the 1955 European Championships in Budapest, Hungary and was Captain of England in 1956.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Technical Official - Brydon Harvey
Brydon Harvey was a coach, player, selector, administrator, and was a basketball journalist for 50 years, but he is most well-known for his 64 years of refereeing. Brydon spent 20 years on the executive of the Nelson Basketball Association. He was the first and only New Zealander to have refereed at two Olympics; 1956 in Melbourne and 1960 in Rome. He also represented New Zealand at the FIBA conference in Melbourne and Rome. In 1984, Harvey was awarded the New Zealand Basketball Federation Reporter of the Year. In 1989, Harvey was inducted as a Life Member of the Basketball Referees Association of New Zealand. He also received the Sir Lance Cross Award in 1990 and was awarded an MBE in 1984.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Contributor - Sir Lance Cross
One of Basketball New Zealand's long-standing awards is named after Sir Lance Cross, one of New Zealand basketball's great personalities. Sir Lance Cross started his basketball career in 1931 while working for the YMCA, and by 1933 was the YMCA's physical education director. From 1936 to 1939 he was the physical education specialist at Hamilton Technical School. He represented New Zealand and was President of the New Zealand Men's Basketball Association from its inception in 1946 until 1971. He was also coach of the national team and he served as a vice president of the International Amateur Basketball Federation.

From 1939 he worked as a physical welfare officer with the Department of Internal Affairs, initially in Palmerston North, but later in Wellington. In this capacity he helped to lay down the principles of physical education in schools, teaching young New Zealanders about the worth of star-jumps, press-ups and other forms of activity on wintry school mornings. During the Second World War he spent three years as a physical education and recreational training officer, first in the Air Training Corps and then in the Royal New Zealand Air Force. After the war he became the Chairman of the New Zealand Olympic Committee, and was also Head of Sports Broadcasting for the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation.

In 1969, he became New Zealand's International Olympic Committee member, a position he held for 20 years. In 1973 Sir Lance was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for services to sports administration. He was later promoted to Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 1977 New Year Honours, for services to sport as a member of the International Olympic Committee, and Chairman of the New Zealand Olympic and Commonwealth Games Association. He was appointed a Knight Bachelor for services to sport in the 1984 Queen's Birthday Honours.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Player - Carolyn Grey
Carolyn Grey played for New Zealand from 1977 to 1978, 1980 to 1983 and again in 1985 when she was the team's Captain. Carolyn was awarded the Zena Bell Gay Award in 1996 for her notable contribution to women's basketball. Her representative basketball career spans more than 30 years, which famously included playing in the Women's Basketball Championships for Waikato in 2012 at the age of 58.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Coach - Steve McKean
Steve McKean started his New Zealand basketball career with the Auckland Club Panmure, after arriving here from the USA over 45 years ago. He was appointed head coach of the New Zealand men's team from 1972 to 1981. During this time he became the first coach to beat Australia, in 1978. He was an NBL coach for nine years, during that time he was notably the coach of the first team in the NBL to win 100 games. Coach received the Basketball New Zealand Coach of the Year Award in both 1978 and again in 2002. Coach was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2012 for his services to Sport. Earlier this year Coach McKean was honoured by the wider sports sector when he was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award at the New Zealand Sport and Recreation Awards.
Coach now works as a Regional Sports director for Sport Taranaki and as a secondary school sports co-ordinator where he continues to have a positive effect on student participation in sport.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Player - Stan Hill
Stan played basketball for New Zealand for 14 years, nine of them as captain. A high point of his extensive career was leading New Zealand to a historic victory over Australia in 1978 under the direction of Coach McKean. Hill played in New Zealand for several provincial and franchise teams, helping each to become national title contenders, and he also played successfully in England and in the United States for San José State. Hill was offered a chance to play in the American NBA, but opted for a club in England instead. Hill later turned to coaching after he returned to New Zealand, which included being assistant coach of the national team.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Contributor - David Rout
David Rout was President of the New Zealand Basketball Federation from 1986 to 1990. He served on the Federation for 15 years. Along with Cedric Cudby, he was responsible for introducing miniball into New Zealand, which continues to be loved by young Kiwis today. He was heavily involved in coaching in Lower Hutt, Mid Canterbury and Otago, particularly at the secondary school and junior level.

David is a life member of Basketball New Zealand and Basketball Otago. He is a past recipient of the Sir Lance Cross Award and received a Member of Honour of FIBA Oceania for his outstanding services in the FIBA Oceania Zone.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Player - Anita Hannen
Anita Hannen was a tall dominant player of the 1950's and 1960's. She was one of the longest serving representative New Zealand Women's Basketball players, selected to play in 10 teams from 1950 and finishing in 1961, including the 1957 Australian tour team.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Contributor - Barry Wilson
Barry Wilson started his basketball career as a player for 40 years, from 1952 through to 1992. Wilson has been an avid administrator of basketball, totalling 51 years' service. He has held numerous administrative positions including with Wellington YMCA Basketball, Wellington Basketball Association, New Zealand Men's Basketball Council, and sole administrator for the Boy's Institute of Basketball. He also founded and administered the Central City Basketball League, a sub Association to Wellington Basketball with over 100 Teams, which he ran for 23 years.

Wilson has worked as a Wellington Basketball Association Executive and then Chairman for several years. He formed and administered the 'Centrals Club', which had 14 teams in the Wellington Association. He was an executive member of the New Zealand Basketball Federation for 14 years.

Wilson is also lauded for his work forming the New Zealand National Basketball League (NBL) and was the League's Commissioner for seven years, Executive Member for four years and Chairman for two years.

In 2006 Wilson became the acting CEO of Basketball New Zealand for six months. He joined the Basketball New Zealand Board from 2007 to 2011, as well as being the Basketball New Zealand representative on the NBL Board from 2009-2011. He was also the NBL Disputes Commissioner from 2011-2015 and has been a New Zealand Basketball Foundation Member since 2009. Barry is a life member of Basketball New Zealand and the Wellington Basketball Association.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Player - Colin Agnew
Colin Agnew was a core figure during New Zealand's initial exposure to international basketball. He was a member of the first New Zealand Men's team to tour in 1955. Colin played for New Zealand in all subsequent national teams until 1962, captaining the 1959 and 1962 sides. He was then appointed National Coach from 1964 to 1970. Keen to see New Zealand's basketball standards improve, Agnew took the opportunity to spend time learning at San Jose University with Stu Inman. Colin was also involved administratively in the establishment of basketball in Hamilton in the 1950's, serving two terms as President.

Hall of Fame Inductee - Contributor - Cedric Cudby
Cedric Cudby was a Manager of New Zealand Men's teams between 1965 and 1971. Colin was a member of the New Zealand Men's Basketball Association and the New Zealand Basketball Federation for 18 years (1963- 1980), where he was Vice-President from 1972-1980. He was recognised by FIBA who awarded him with a Movers and Shapers Award for his contribution to the sport here and in the Oceania region. Cudby later represented New Zealand on FIBA and was instrumental in ensuring that Oceania became an official FIBA Zone, which in turn meant New Zealand had regular international games, particularly with Australia. Cudby played a significant role in the initiation and development of Walter Nash Stadium in Lower Hutt, and is also a life member of the Hutt Valley Basketball Association and Basketball New Zealand.

- NZ Herald

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