Proud night for new life members

Maitland Pickers president Frank Lawler, East Maitland referee Graham Stair, Cessnock's Michael Deacon and Bulldogs duo Mick Carr and Phil Osland were awarded Newcastle Rugby League life membership on Wednesday night.

Lawler was joined by his proud mum Norma who also holds life membership of the league.

Current player and Kurri Kurri Old Boys president Carr was an automatic entrant after playing 250 grade games, Osland was honoured for 20 years plus service.

Deacon was also recognised for his continuing service with the Goannas.

Stair clocked up 411 first grade games as a referee and an incredible 700 plus across all grades.

Pickers star Adam Clydsdale won the player of the year and players’ player award. Maitland’s Ryan Walsh won the leading point scorer award, Kurri’s Rachel Sharpe was Ladies League Tag player’s player and young Cessnock fullback Harry O’Brien was named rookie of the year.