The accolades keep coming for Alexandra woolhandler and shearer Pagan Karauria.

Mrs Karauria (30) was named New Zealand Rural Sportswoman of the Year at a gala dinner at the Norwood New Zealand Rural Sports Awards in Palmerston North on Saturday night.

She was recently selected to represent New Zealand in woolhandling and the World Shearing and Woolhandling Championships in Le Dorat, France, in July.

She was one of the stars of the successful documentary She Shears, released last year, which revolved around the Golden Shears and featured five women shearers.

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Last year, she also achieved master woolhandler status.

Finalists in the awards came from fields as diverse as shearing, tree climbing, harness racing and cowboy shooting.

Sir Brian Lochore, who chaired the judging panel, said the awards were about celebrating traditional sports and the people who kept events running "year in and year out'' in towns and settlements across the country.

Sportsman of the year was won by Tony Bouskill, of Napier, who competes in fencing contests.