HUNTLY’s Kym Bell has graciously accepted the Heathcote District vote count mistake in which she was incorrectly announced as the winner of the league’s A Grade medal.
A red-faced HDFNL was forced to amend its voting on Thursday after it was discovered Colbinabbin runner-up Brydie Lawford had missed out on receiving two votes early in Wednesday night’s Esther Cheatley Medal count.
Huntly’s Bell had been announced as the winner with 21 votes, with Lawford finishing runner-up on 20 votes.
However, with the extra two votes Lawford received after the discovery of the error, it lifted her tally to 22 to surpass Bell and force the league to amend its winner.
An apologetic HDFNL manager Jan Mannes says the error was made by her when she mis-spelt Lawford’s christian name for round two when entering the votes for the vote count presentation.
“It’s one of those things… mistakes happen and I’m okay with it,” Bell told the Bendigo Advertiser.
“I don’t play netball to win awards like this; they are nice when they come along, but it isn’t my motivation for playing, so I’m okay.
“Brydie is a good player and she got the most votes, so I’m alright with that and I’m still happy to come runner-up.”
Lawford’s victory, albeit delayed, is the second year in a row she has won the Esther Cheatley Medal, having also taken it out last year with 31 votes.
“I’m incredibly humbled and honoured to have won the award, but my first thoughts when I was told were with Kym because she was such a deserving recipient who has had an outstanding season,” Lawford said.
“I was very surprised when I took the phone call about what had happened.
“We don’t play netball for these types of accolades, we play for friendship and fun and the competition, so it is very humbling.”
HDFNL chairman Peter Cole said action was taken by the league to inform both players as soon as the error was discovered.
“It’s a very unfortunate and disappointing error on our behalf and we apologise to Kym, Brydie and all HDFNL followers,” Cole said.
“The error was in pre-count quality checks and, unfortunately, it had a significant impact on the final result.
“We apologise unreservedly to Kym and Huntly, but also congratulate her on an outstanding season.”
• Other grades results:
Winner – Alyssa Cole (White Hills), 21.
Runner-up – Sarah Nash (White Hills), 19.
Winner – Julianne Baldock (White Hills), 23.
Runner-up – Katelyn Parry (White Hills), 21.
Winner – Sarah Makepeace (Elmore), 24.
Runner-up – Zahlia Turton (North Bendigo), 20.
Winner – Abbey Hromenko (Elmore), 22.
Runner-up – Gretal Hodge (Leitchville-Gunbower), Maeve Tupper (Mount Pleasant), 20.
Winner – Dominique Palmer (Colbinabbin), 25.
Runner-up – Jorja Whatley (Mount Pleasant), 24
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