Brooke Dickie has done everything she possibly can in water polo during the last 12 months.
The 18-year-old Albury product has made a massive mark on the sport on her way to winning the 2017 Norske Skog Young Achiever of the Year award.
A champion representative at a junior level, Dickie was able to take her promising performances from the local competition to earn herself a spot on the Australian team for the FINA World Youth Women’s Water Polo Championships last December.
She then found the desire to take her game to the next level and made the full-time move to Sydney, joining the Sydney University Lions in the National Water Polo League (NWPL) and training at the NSW Institute of Sport (NSWIS).
Her progress during this defining period of her career has inspired her to push for further opportunities, with a place on the national team for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games the ultimate dream.
“I feel like all the hard work has paid off and all the stepping stones have come together.
“I’m really excited to have seen how far all these athletes have gone and to see how far I will go now.
“I’ve got a lot of goals ahead of me, so I’m hoping I can achieve them and live up to the potential.
“I thought there was a lot of tough competitors in the room tonight, so it was a shock that’s for sure.”
Dickie is looking forward to the rest of what has already been an impressive year, with her sights set on qualifying for the Australian under 20s and making her way into the senior ranks of the sport.
“I’ll continue training with NSWIS full-time and playing for the Sydney Uni Lions,” she said.
“There is a few Australian camps coming up in the near future, so I will be training with them and see where it takes me.”
Sport Albury-Wodonga chairman Rob McDonald paid tribute to what had been another strong field of nominees.
“Congratulations goes to Brooke Dickie, but I think congratulations also goes to everyone in this room tonight and all the athletes,” he said.
“Keep working hard representing Albury-Wodonga and making us very proud.
“We’ll be working away again in the next 12 months to find another bunch of athletes so we can bring them up here and recognise them.”
Guest speakers and former winners of the Young Achiever of the Year were cyclist Jesse Featonby and Olympic shooter James Willett.
Both shared stories from their sporting journeys and wished all of the nominees on the night all the best for a bright future.