Canberra Raiders players Josh Hodgson and Josh Papalii have taken out the prestigious Meninga Medal for the Raiders best player, with the joint winners capping off one of the closest Medal counts in club history.
Hodgson and Papalii both polled 19 votes for the season, edging out Jordan Rapana and Joey Leilua on 17 points, with Jack Wighton (14) and Jarrod Croker (13) rounding out the top six.
The Meninga Medal is awarded annually to the NRL’s best player and is voted on by the players and football staff after each match on a 3-2-1 basis.
The combination of Leilua and Rapana could not be separated in the voting and they were also announced joint Coaches Award winners, after a stunning season on the right edge for the Green Machine.
Earlier in the evening the Raiders made a very special presentation to former Chairman and current Club Patron John McIntyre, inducting him into the life membership of the Raiders.
McIntyre has been an instrumental part of the Raiders organisation since 1982 and the life membership was due recognition for all of his contribution over the clubs history.
Clay Priest was named NRL rookie of the year after a stunning rise through the ranks, after joining the Raiders fulltime midway through the season from Mounties.
Last year’s Meninga Medal winner Sia Soliola was named Fred Daly Clubman of the year for his outstanding contribution to the team both on and off the field, while rising star Nick Cotric received the Junior representative player of the year after representing NSW under 18’s and the Australian Schoolboys this season.
The NYC Players Player was awarded to hard working forward Jack Williams, with Daniel Dole picking up the Coaches Award and Jack Hickson the clubs welfare and education award.
2016 Meninga Medal Winners
Meninga Medal: Josh Hodgson & Josh Papalii
Meninga Medal Points
19 Josh Hodgson & Josh Papalii
17 Jordan Rapana & Joey Leilua
14 Jack Wighton
13 Jarrod Croker
Life Membership: John McIntyre
NRL Coaches Award: Jordan Rapana & Joey Leilua
NRL Rookie of the Year: Clay Priest
Fred Daly Clubman of the Year: Sia Soliola
NYC Player of the Year: Jack Williams
NYC Coaches Award: Daniel Dole
Gordon McLucas Junior Representative Player of the Year: Nick Cotric
Geoff Caldwell Welfare & Education Award: Jack Hickson