The finalists for the 2021 Norwood New Zealand Rural Sports Awards have been announced.
There are five categories this year, Rural Sportsman of the Year, Rural Sportswoman of the Year, Young New Zealand Rural Sportsperson of the Year, Outstanding Contribution to New Zealand Rural Sports Award and the Lifetime Legacy Award.
The awards dinner will be held on Friday, March 12 at Awapuni Function Centre, the night before the Ford Ranger New Zealand Rural Games in Palmerston North.
Before that gala event takes place, you can get to know the finalists a little better below.
Here are the finalists for New Zealand Rural Sportsman of the Year.
PTS Logistics New Zealand Rural Sportsman of the Year
Scott Forrest - tree climbing
Two-time winner of the ASIA Pacific Tree Climbing competition and five-time winner of the New Zealand National Tree Climbing Championship, Scott Forrest's tree climbing skills have taken him around the world.
Forrest's streak continued to peak in 2019 when he took out international titles at pinnacle events.
Forrest was named the Males Masters Champion at the International Tree Climbing Competition in 2019 for the fourth time, after beating 74 competitors from 20 different countries.
He went on to win the Red Bull Branched Out competition, becoming the first person to claim both titles in the same year.
A member of the International Society of Arboriculture, International Husqvarna H-Team, and New Zealand Arborist Tree Climbing Committee, Forrest's contribution to the sport is invaluable.
Not just a champion on the field, Forrest also assists in promoting tree climbing to a younger audience, promoting safe working practices.
Rowland Smith - shearing
Rowland Smith is considered one of the best shearers in New Zealand.
He has won more than 160 open finals since the start of the 2006-2007 season, including multiple Golden Shears and New Zealand titles, and the 2014 World Championship in Ireland.
In March 2020, Smith won the Golden Shears open title for a seventh time, beating the six titles held by original Golden Shears household name Brian "Snow" Quinn. The achievement means Smith is now second only to Sir David Fagan's record of 16.
Continually striving to be the best, Smith now has his sights set on the 2023 World Championship.
Not just a keen competitor, Smith also takes an interest in the development of young shearers, and is the key instructor and motivator at the Great Raihania Shears secondary school competition at the Hawke's Bay A and P Show.
Tony Bouskill - fencing
Tony Bouskill's fencing skills are unrivalled.
He was crowned Fencing World Champion and Speed Fencing Champion in 2019.
Closer to home, after placing second and third in 2016 and 2017, Bouskill went on to win the Golden Pliers in 2018 and 2019.
He also took out the Silver Spades title in 2018 and 2019.
Not only that, but he also won every competition he entered in the last year.
Bouskill has also won the Taumarunui Fencing Competition four years in a row, along with three Waverley competitions and five doubles competitions.