You don't care if you're running first. This is about next year. What ...
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The Tigers held their annual presentation night in front of a
packed auditorium at Easts Leagues Club on Friday night, with prop
James Stosic claiming three awards.
Stosic was voted as Players' Players and also claimed the Patrons Trophy and award for the club's Best and Fairest at Queensland Cup level.
The prestigious Loft Medal - given to players based on their ability, dedication, club interest and desire to win - went to reliable winger Kev Stephensen. Despite a lean year on the field, a humbled Stephensen said he hoped to turn things around in 2011.
"I feel very honoured to be up here accepting it...and to the guys coming back next year, hopefully things will be bigger and better."
The evening also featured a presentation to the premiership winning FOGS Colts Challenge side where coach Peter Edwards spoke of his belief in the players on grand final day.
"I was always confident we'd get the better of them (Wynnum Manly), and with seven seconds to go we got it," he said.
Colts' captain Steve Tyrrell capped off a dream season by being named Best and Fairest and Players' Player.
The Past Players' Association's annual awards went to centre Liam Campbell and backrower Dan Fullarton for their consistency in the backs and forwards respectively.
Easts legend John Lang, who is currently head coach at South Sydney, was presented with life membership for his contribution to the club.
Stalwart Len Conroy, previously voted one of the 'Top 25 Tigers of All Time', reminisced passionately about his time spent coaching a young blonde haired hooker with "feet like lightning" in the days when scrums were a true contest for possession. Lang then returned the tribute, saying Conroy's tutledge helped him learn the value of being a positive and encouraging coach.
Lang made his first grade debut for the Tigers as a 19-year old in 1969 and went on to claim three premierships ('72, '77 and '78) in the club's 'glorious seventies'. The tenacious hooker left Easts in 1979, playing the following season for the Eastern Suburbs Roosters in the NSWRL competition and finishing runner-up in his sole year at the club. Lang represented Queensland on 19 occasions, including the 'birth' of State of Origin in 1980, and also donned the Australian green and gold in three internationals.
He returned to coach Easts in two stints between 1981 & 1984 and from 1990-1993. Lang guided Easts to four grand finals ('83, '91, '92 and '93), claiming the trophy in 1983 and 1991. His success lead to a position with the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, who he mentored for thirteen seasons. Lang left the Sharks for Penrith in 2002 and steered the Panthers to an NRL Premiership in 2003. He is currently the head coach of the Rabbitohs.
The presentation night was hosted by former Channel Nine sports journalist Steve Hadden, who left the audience in stitches with many a punch line throughout the course of the evening.
INTRUST SUPER CUP
Most Serviceable Player: Dean Sheppard
Best Back: Paoa Faamita
Best Forward: Matt McPhee
Best & Fairest: James Stosic
Most Serviceable Player: Lachlan Tanzer
Best Back: Lance Morris
Best Forward: Fili Sofa
Best & Fairest: Leon Panapa
Most Serviceable Player: Charlie Jones
Best Back: Daniel Wallace
Best Forward: Blair Young
Best & Fairest: Steven Tyrrell
Past Players & Officials Association Awards
Most Consistent Forward: Daniel Fullarton
Most Consistent Back: Liam Campbell
McGrath Family Award - Players' Player: James Stosic
Eddie Wyllie Trophy - FOGS Cup Players' Player: Leon Panapa
Terry Creedy Memorial Award - FOGS Colts Players' Player: Steven Tyrrell
Tamaz Heugh Trophy - Mal Meninga Cup Players' Player: Daniel Alvaro
Cook Family Trophy - Encouragement Award: Steven Thorpe
Patrons Trophy - James Stosic (Brian Smart)
Loth Medal - Kevin Stephensen (A.J Parkes)
Life Membership: John Lang