Thursday, August 24, 2023


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Oztag Refs Recognised

As the 2022 Oztag season came to a close last Wednesday, two of Mackay’s stalwarts were recognised for their contributions to the game by Oztag Queensland.

Referee Courtney Gordon was awarded 2022 Female Referee Of The Year and Head Referee Damien Horwell was nominated for his service to the game.

Courtney found out she’d won Female Referee Of The Year as she was making the announcement of Damien’s nomination at the end of season presentation.

“It’s a bit of a shock coming from a smaller venue against a lot of the bigger ones,” she said.

“For little old Mackay to be recognised, it’s pretty special.”

Courtney has been refereeing since she was 15 and has worked in both Queensland and New South Wales programs, saying she’s proud of the culture at Mackay Oztag.

“We have a pretty awesome gang; we’ve got plenty of good vibes happening through the venue at the moment and heaps of support,” she said.

“The game’s growing slowly but it’s definitely growing and we’re actually starting to become a little bit more competitive with the higher grades at the representative tournaments.”

Damien has been refereeing in Mackay for 18 months and said he was surprised to be nominated.

“I feel great for it, but a bit shocked,” he said.

Damien said he enjoys controlling the game and the respect from players.

“As I ref, I teach the people how to play, especially those that don’t know how to play the game, and that’s the part that I really enjoy,” he said.

“What we have here is very special.

“I really enjoy it and look forward to every Wednesday night.”

The Oztag season will start again in January.

Follow Mackay Oztag on Facebook and Instagram for more information and to get involved.

Courtney Gordon, Maddison Reeves and Damien Horwell of Mackay Oztag

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