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Queensland claims dual honours with Buildcorp Super W and Harvey Norman Super Rugby Player of the Year awards

Tue, 01/02/2022, 7:00 pm
Rugby Australia
by Rugby Australia
Queensland's Lucy Lockhart and James O'Connor have been named Buildcorp Super W and Harvey Norman Super Rugby Players of the Year.
Queensland's Lucy Lockhart and James O'Connor have been named Buildcorp Super W and Harvey Norman Super Rugby Players of the Year.

Queensland has claimed dual Player of the Year honours with forward Lucy Lockhart earning the top gong in Buildcorp Super W and back James O’Connor claiming the Harvey Norman Super Rugby nod.

The pair were announced today as part of a week-long celebration of the Rugby Australia Awards which will culminate in the 2021 John Eales Medal being announced on Sunday morning (AEDT).

A member of the Queensland Reds for the past two years, Lockhart was named vice-captain for the 2021 Buildcorp Super W season in Coffs Harbour and helped steer the side to its second finals appearance in a row.

Now a teacher, Lockhart was previously serving in the military from 2011-2018 as a recruitment officer begun coaching with Queensland Rugby Union in their girl’s academy squad as well as coaching at Bond Uni and at her school. While she will miss the 2022 Super W season due to parental leave, Lockhart has set her sights on representing the Wallaroos later this year.

“I’m extremely honoured to receive this award and couldn’t be happier right now after hearing the news,” she said.

“I think being named as vice-captain and subsequently in the Reds leadership group had a big influence on the way I approached the game last year. Always having a positive mindset and working to lift the entire group was a big focus for me and it couldn’t have worked without the support from our captain Cobie Jane-Morgan, so I owe a lot of this to her.

“It was a fantastic season for our side last year and I think the side is ready to get over the hump and win a championship.

“Currently my focus is on returning for the Buildcorp Wallaroos come Test match time and I’m looking forward to getting back on the field and hopefully wearing the green and gold jersey for the first time this year.”

Queensland Reds playmaker O’Connor has been recognised for the significant role he played in steering his side on route to claiming the 2021 Super Rugby AU title.

O’Connor finished the regular season as joint top point scorer, alongside Melbourne Rebels playmaker Matt To’omua.

“It’s a huge honour to be named the Super Rugby Player of the Year. I’m really proud of where we got to as a team last year.

“We had a great season winning the Super Rugby AU title, and this is a nice piece of recognition to finish it off.

“Our attention has now turned to the inaugural Super Rugby Pacific competition. I feel like we fell short last year in the combined competition, so I’m very excited to test ourselves against the best of the best again and go a step further.”

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