Charlotte Caslick and Henry Hutchison have been named the 2021 Shawn Mackay Women’s and Men’s Sevens Players of the Year awards.
Named in memory of Shawn Mackay’s life and his contribution to Rugby, this award recipient is representative of both a men’s and women’s player who has demonstrated an outstanding commitment to their respective Sevens program, and whose level of sportsmanship and leadership upholds the values of Rugby.
Both players were standouts during the Australian Sevens 2021 campaign, most notably leading the charge at the Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Caslick kicked off Australia’s Olympic campaign, scoring the opening try on day one of competition and remained true to form the remainder of the campaign, finding the line against Japan, China and bronze medallists Fiji.
Following the Olympics, Caslick has since led the Australian Women to back-to-back titles in Dubai, accumulating 65 points in the opening two rounds.
Similarly, men’s vice-captain Hutchison also returned to the Olympic stage following impressive performances in the lead up to the pinnacle event. Hutchison was instrumental in Australia’s success during the PacificAus Sport Oceania sevens in Townsville and has gone on to steer the Australians to a second-place finish on the World Series in Dubai.
Australian Sevens Performance Manager Scott Bowen said: “Shawn represented everything we hope our program members can be both on and off the field, and this award holds a special place in the program.
“Both Charlotte and Henry are leaders in every aspect of their game, from how they prepare, train and play and it is an example our younger squad members look up to.”
Australian Women’s Sevens player Charlotte Caslick said: “It’s an honour to be chosen for this award given all it represents.
“While we didn’t have the campaign we wanted in 2021, towards the end of the year we started to come together as a team and I’m excited to play with such an incredible group as we progress through the World Series.
“Rugby isn’t a game of individual awards, but I’m certainly honoured to be recognised by my peers and know I’ll have a hard time retaining this honour next year.”
Australian Men’s Sevens player Henry Hutchison said: “I am delighted to receive the Shawn Mackay award. To be recognised by your teammates for your contribution to the team is very humbling and is the greatest honour a player can receive.
“Shawn typified what it meant to be an Australian 7s player and my father actually taught him at Waverley. So, the award is extra special to my family and myself.
“2021 was a tough year and it didn’t play out the way we wanted it to. However, there were so many learnings for our group, and this has added to our hunger as we look to make Rugby Australia, our fans and the country proud of this program moving forward.
“There has been a massive attitude shift in this area of our group, and I can’t wait to see where it takes us.”
Their recognition is 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)