Netball player and chair Emma Payne voted University of Bath Sports Personality of the Year at 2023 Blues Awards

27 April 2023

Netballer Emma Payne has been voted by their fellow student-athletes as the University of Bath Sports Personality of the Year in the 2023 Blues Awards.

The Sport and Exercise Science student was recognised for her contribution to the University’s netball club over the past four years, which has seen her serve as Chair this year alongside helping the 1st team reach the BUCS National Championships final. She also plays for Team Bath Netball U21s in the NPL division and has been coaching the Men’s/Mixed netball squad during their first full season.

Payne received her award from representatives of event sponsors Matrix Fitness, who are equipment suppliers to the Team Bath Gym & Fitness Centre. Also shortlisted for the Sports Personality award were basketballer Josh Davis, lacrosse player Liv Best and GB U21 hockey international Vicki McCabe, an Ivor Powell Sporting Scholar who received a Full Blue for students who have competed both for the University and internationally over a two-year period.

The Blues Awards ceremony – the annual celebration of student sport at the University, organised by The SU Bath – this year took place at the historic Roman Baths and Pump Rooms on Wednesday.


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University of Bath Golf Society was named as Club of the Year and BUCS Team of the Year was won by the tennis women’s 1sts, who were unbeaten all season as they won the national BUCS league and cup double.

The David Vanderlinde Award recognising sporting and academic success went to BUCS Super Rugby men’s 1st XV co-captain Tom Williams (Aerospace Engineering) and the Ivor Powell Award for Excellence in Coaching went to men’s basketball head coach Antonio Wilburn.

Lacrosse player Sebastian Di Siena (Integrated Mechanical and Electrical Engineering) received the Tugendhat Trophy for Sporting Endeavour, which recognises achievements by athletes in sports they were not familiar with when they arrived at the University.

Fellow lacrosse player Liv Best (Health and Exercise Science) shared the Gethin John Bevan Club Member of the Year award with American Footballer Max McManus (Integrated Mechanical and Electrical Engineering) and Howard Richards (Advanced Automotive Propulsion Systems) was named as SU Sport Volunteer Coach of the Year for his work with the hockey club.

More than 50 student-athletes were also presented with Blues, Colours and Ribbons in recognition of their sporting achievements during the 2022-23 season.

Honorary Blues recognising their medal-winning successes at World Championships and the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games were presented to Arran Gulliver (bobsleigh); Ed Mildred, Luke Turley (swimming); Charlie Follett, Olivia Green, Jess Varley (modern pentathlon); and Craig Thompson (skeleton), who all train at the University of Bath.

Click here to read a full report of the evening on The SU Bath website and click here to view a full picture gallery.

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2023 Blues Awards Roll of Honour

University of Bath Sports Personality of the Year: Emma Payne (netball). Runners-up: Liv Best (lacrosse), Josh Davis (basketball), Vicki McCabe (hockey).

Club of the Year: University of Bath Golf Society. Runners-up: Hockey Club, Lacrosse Club.

BUCS Team of the Year: Tennis women’s 1sts. Runners-up: Lacrosse men’s 1sts, football men’s 1sts.

Gethin John Bevan Club Member of the Year: Max McManus (American Football) and Liv Best (lacrosse).

The Ivor Powell Award: Antonio Wilburn (basketball).

The Tugendhat Trophy: Sebastian Di Siena (lacrosse).

The David Vandelinde Award: Tom Williams (rugby union).

SU Sport Volunteer Coach of the Year: Howard Richards (hockey).

Full Blue: Vicki McCabe (hockey).

Half Blue: Joseph O’Loughlin (association football and Futsal); Katie Scott, Alicia Chu, Emma Hooper (badminton); Catherine Bishop (fencing); Oluwatoke Akinseye, Alexander Bird, Alexander Blackwell, Sebastian Di Siena, James Goldsmith, Jack O’Mahoney (lacrosse); Isabel Highsted , Emma Payne (netball); Ismail Hussain, Mi-Ha Snapes (taekwondo); Emily Devey Smith (tennis).

Honorary Blue: Arran Gulliver (bobsleigh); Ed Mildred, Luke Turley (swimming); Charlie Follett, Olivia Green, Jess Varley (modern pentathlon); Craig Thompson (skeleton).

Colour: Max McManus (American Football); Chiara Andreotti, Emily Arrell, Lily Aungier, Maddy Brown, Priya Dhatt, Anna Kanz, Maddie Robertson, Serafina Rowden, Kate Walsh, Eleri Webber, Anya Welch (association football and Futsal); Christopher Liu, Emma Ford; Caitlin Illingworth; David Phillips, Rochit Shelkikar (badminton); Arnau Ayerbe Garcia, Carlos Becker, Philip Bird, Hannah Brown, Lewis Cox, Josh Davis, Damon de Cardoso, Angus Edkins, Benedek Goldmann, Rebecca Miller, Martin Moreno Delgado, Maria Valderrabano (basketball); Catriona Gilmour, Katie Little, Lauren Bond, Jac Cleaver, Will Cook, Sophie Dixon, Colin Dudrey-Harvey, Teona Goodge, Will Gray, Toby Hill, Bryn Jones, Jonny Kerr, Sam Leigh, Antoinette Marchant, Benjamin McElroy, Jacob Melville-Smith, Jennifer Metcalf, Lukas Moment, Ollie Nedderman, Lucy Prest, Charlotte Satchwell, Ben Scriven, Fraser Smellie, Jack Smith, James Smith, Jacob Staig, Alice Steel, Rosie Usher, Lydia Woodcock (hockey); Matthew Bowen, Ben Lawson, Eleanor Brzeskwinski, Max Diamond, Maya Frost, Agatha Greenway, Sophie Hounsell, Koray Ibrahim, Phoebe James, Sarah Lowe, Ellie Mason, Claudia Shehadeh, Amy Tapper (lacrosse); Jemma Nightingale, Jasmine Nightingale (netball); Bella Balian, Danielle Price (riding); Sam Bridges, Anna Newell, Tabitha Reynolds, Tom Williams (rugby union and league); Jessica Westlake (swimming) ;Tim Walters, Aimee Wong (table tennis); Paul Petan (taekwondo); Matthew Doe (tennis); Bryce Jersing (triathlon); Stella Jukic, Kin Lo, Helin Özer, Chara Sofocleous, Andrea Spalova, Scott Williams (volleyball).

Honorary Colour: Max McManus (American Football); Kate Walsh, Lily Aungier (association football and Futsal); Dayane Celi (cheerleading); Liv Best (lacrosse); Emma Hill, Emma Payne (netball); Bryce Jersing (triathlon), Maria Valderrabano (volleyball).

Ribbon: Antoinette Marchant (handball).

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