Two Whanganui-born national representatives who later gained international recognition as administrators are the latest inductees into the Wanganui Sports Hall of Fame.
Prominent diving referee and judge Robin Hood and the softball umpire, the late Charlie Phillips, last night became the first inductees from their sports into the local Hall of Fame.
They were named at the Ray White 2018 Whanganui Sports Awards function and took the number of hall members from 12 sports up to 26, plus three family groups.
Hood, a national diving champion who finished fifth at the 1996 Kingston Commonwealtth Games, was elected into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 2004 for his outstanding contribution to diving since 1974.
He was involved as a diving official – referee, judge, delegate or lecturer – at 14 world championships, nine world cups, seven Olympic Games, 10 Commonwealth Games and five Asian and South East Asian Games – as well as conducting 22 clinics in 16 countries around the world.
Hood started diving at the Gonville Swimming Club in 1949, but moved to Hamilton 10 years later to further his diving career under noted coach Mervyn Campbell.
He helped reshape diving in New Zealand, being elected a life member of Diving New Zealand in 2001, was inducted into the International Hall of Fame three years later and received a FINA (world swimming-diving) Gold Pin in Rome in 2009 for 17 years of international diving service.
Hood, who now lives in Albany, was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) in this year's Queen's Honours List for his services to diving.
Phillips, who died in 2003, won a bronze medal with the New Zealand team at the inaugural softball world championships in Mexico in 1966 and also played in the world tournament in Oklahoma two years later.
He was a top class infielder, playing mainly short stop or third base, and was also a fine pitcher.
But it was as an umpire that he was to excel, being chief New Zealand umpire for 13 years (1983-1996) including officiating at world men's, women's and junior tournaments.
In 1997, Phillips was elected to the NZ Softball Hall of Fame and two years later inducted into the International Hall of Fame for 30 years of service in all aspects of the sport – playing, umpiring and administration.
He became the South Pacific Regional Umpire in Chief, which included assisting with the standardising of international umpire training programmes.
Phillips has left a legacy in New Zealand.
He introduced teeball softball, the starting point for thousands of junior players, into this country after seeing its popularity on one of his overseas visits.
He was a versatile all-round sportsman, also representing Whanganui in soccer as a goal-keeper, badminton, squash and table tennis.
There were six Wanganui Hall of Fame nominations this year with the four who missed out are now added to the revolving list of possible inductees for future years.
The selection panel comprised Sue Westwood (chairperson), Sue Haden (chairperson of Whanganui Sports Heritage Trust), Nicky Malipaard (Sport Whanganui), Ron Palenski (Dunedin – NZ Hall of Fame director), Ken Mair (Whanganui Iwi), Mark Stoneman (multisports organiser), John Phillips (media) and Keith Smith (Secretary – Whanganui District Council sports adviser).
Robin Michael Newton Hood (1939 – )
Whanganui-born Robin Hood has an outstanding record in international springboard and high platform diving administration.
He has officiated at 14 world championships, nine World Cups, seven Olympic Games, 10 Commonwealth Games and five Asian and South East Asian Games.
Robin started his diving career with the Gonville Swimming Club in 1949, winning club, centre and inter-provincial titles as well as club and centre backstroke, medley and freestyle swimming championships.
He shifted to Hamilton in 1959 to join diving coach – the late Mervyn Campbell – at the Rovers club, winning the 1970 NZ Men's 1m springboard title after being runner-up four times in the 3m championship.
A gold medal in the 1966 NSW 3m state championship helped him win selection in the NZ Commonwealth Games team for Kingston, where he finished fifth.
After missing inclusion in New Zealand's 1968 Mexico Olympics team, Hood retired from national competitions in 1971 to concentrate on the administration side of diving.
This had started at Gonville with the formation of a Wanganui Diving Committee for the Wanganui Swimming Centre.
Hood was a foundation member of the NZ Diving Committee attached to the NZASA. It later became Diving NZ.
Hood's first national appointment was as manager of the NZ diving team to the 1982 world (FINA) championships in Ecuador.
As the NZASA emissary, he successfully helped win the rights to host the 1983 FINA world junior diving championships in Hamilton and he became secretary of the organising committee.
He was technical director of the organising committee when the 1999 FINA World Cup was held in Wellington.
Since the 1974 Commonwealth Games in Christchurch, where he was a referee, Hood has officiated in a major capacity – referee, judge, delegate or lecturer – at international FINA events all around the world. They included 22 clinics in 16 countries.
Hood, who retired from FINA duties in Rome in 2009 and now lives in Albany, received a Diving New Zealand Life Membership Award in 2001, and was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame (Paragon Award) for "Outstanding Contribution to Diving" in 2004.
He was also awarded the FINA Gold Pin for Service to International Diving in 2009 and this year was named as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for service to springboard and platform diving by the Governor General of New Zealand.
Charles Ernest Phillips (1940-2003)
Whanganui-born Charlie Phillips was the first New Zealander to play, umpire and administer softball internationally.
He represented New Zealand at the inaugural world championships in Mexico 1966, finishing third behind America and Mexico, and again in Oklahoma in 1968 when they placed fifth.
Those two Kiwi teams were the pioneers for New Zealand sides who are now the most successful with seven world titles.
Although a class pitcher for the Wanganui representative team, Phillips gained international honours as a short stop or third baseman.
He was a very alert in-fielder with quick reflexes and a powerful arm as well as being a strong batter.
Phillips, a foundation member of the Braves Softball club, was an all-round sportsman, also representing Wanganui in soccer (a top class goal-keeper), badminton, squash and table tennis.
He was New Zealand Softball Umpire in Chief for 13 years (1983-1996), officiating at world championships and deputy chief umpire at world women's and junior tournaments.
In 1997 he was inducted into the NZ Softball Hall of Fame and in 1999 into the International Softball Federation Hall of Fame.
His International Hall citation recognised Phillip's contribution and dedication to the development and growth of world softball, in particular umpiring, and mentions his experience in all facets of the sport – playing, umpiring and administrating over a 30 year span.
He was the South Pacific Regional Umpire in Chief, which included assisting with the standardising of international umpire training programmes.
Phillips has a major legacy in New Zealand softball - he is credited with introducing popular teeball into the country after witnessing its popularity on an overseas trip.
The Phillips family was heavily involved in Wanganui softball with Charlie's father Fred an umpire, mother Alice a scorer, while brother Bill played for New Zealand in the outfield and sister Margaret repped for Wanganui.