Borough, Sandhurst young gun crowned Rising Stars


MARYBOROUGH’S Taj Bond and Sandhurst’s Charlotte Sexton have been crowned the Rising Stars in the Bendigo Bank Bendigo FNL for the 2023 football/netball season.

The awards which began in 2008 are proudly sponsored by Bart ‘n Print.

Inaugural winner of the Rising Star was Castlemaine’s Dustin Martin who has since kicked on to win a Brownlow Medal, be a triple premiership winner and triple Norm Smith medallist with Richmond.

The announcement of this year’s Rising Star winners was held during Monday night’s Michelsen Medal pre-vote count on Radio Fresh fm.

It’s been a brilliant year on the netball court for Charlotte Sexton.

A gun defender, Sexton has starred in Sandhurst’s unbeaten run in the Bendigo FNL’s A-grade action.

Great play for Victoria at the 19-and-under netball championships led to Sexton being selected in the Australian under-19 team and the Victorian Fury squad for the Australian Netball Championships.

Representative commitments meant less games with Sandhurst, but Sexton was a key cog in the defensive third for the Dragons in A-grade or A-reserve.

The Sexton family has achieved plenty of success with Sandhurst, and also at AFL level.

An athletic ruckman/forward, Bond impressed at senior level with Maryborough and also with Bendigo Pioneers in the Coates Talent League.

Bond played a key role in the Magpies’ under-18s team reaching last Sunday’s first semi-final.

Five years ago it was Lachlan Bond from Maryborough who was the Rising Star award recipient.

The Bond links to Maryborough FNC are strong.

A gun centre half-forward, Jamie Bond was the Michelsen medallist in 1996 and played a key role in the Magpies’ back-to-back premiership wins in 1998 and ’99.

Vote counts for the Michelsen Medal, senior football; and Betty Thompson Medal, A-grade netball, will be held this Sunday from 6pm at Bendigo Club in Strathdale.

Winners of Monday night’s pre-vote count will be presented with their awards on Michelsen Medal night.

Nominees for this season’s football Rising Star:

Taj Bond, Maryborough.

Jye Chambers, Kyneton.

Archer Day-Wicks, Sandhurst.

Macey Eaton, Golden Square.

Connor Evans, Kangaroo Flat.

James Fox, Gisborne.

Hugh Freckleton, Golden Square.

Noah Furlong, Kangaroo Flat.

Ethan Hein, Castlemaine.

Carson James, Strathfieldsaye.

Zaydyn Lockwood, South Bendigo.

Harry Luxmoore, Gisborne.

Blake McGregor, Eaglehawk.

Tom Myers, Maryborough.

Jake Nihill, Sandhurst.

Jack O’Shannessy.

Tait Poyser, South Bendigo.

Francis Randall, Kyneton.

Nominees for this season’s netball Rising Star:

Ava Broderick, Eaglehawk.

Maggie Burke, South Bendigo.

Siarne Cass, Strathfieldsaye.

Millie Cassidy, Maryborough.

Eden Clifford, South Bendigo.

Lauren Girvan, Kyneton.

Emily McDonald, Gisborne.

Gemma McPhee, Kangaroo Flat.

Poppy McPherson, Eaglehawk.

Mikayla Mullen, Kangaroo Flat.

Abbey Nalder, Maryborough.

Eliza Oxley, Sandhurst.

Elise Richards, Golden Square.

Charlotte Sexton, Sandhurst.

Torie Skrijel, Gisborne.

Hannah Tyndall, Golden Square.

Manaia Vanderlee, Kyneton.

Megan Wilson, Castlemaine.

Bendigo FNL Rising Star honour board:


2008 Dustin Martin, Castlemaine.

2009 Lee Coghlan, Sandhurst.

2010 Dylan Clohesy, Kangaroo Flat.

2011 Angus Fortune, Castlemaine.

2012 Hamish Morcom, Golden Square.

2013 Blake O’Halloran, South Bendigo.

2014 Billy Mahony, Maryborough.

2015 Harry Conway, Strathfieldsaye.

2016 Max O’Sullivan, Kyneton.

2017 Jack Scanlon, Gisborne.

2018 Lachlan Bond, Maryborough.

2019 Liam Spear, Gisborne.

2020 No award, COVID-19 pandemic.

2021 No award, COVID-19 pandemic.

2022 Hamish Yunghanns, Kyneton.

2023 Taj Bond, Maryborough.


2008 Maddi Exell, Sandhurst.

2009 Abby Gilmore, Sandhurst.

2010 Olivia Thomas, Eaglehawk.

2011 Chloe Watson, Sandhurst.

2012 Jacqueline Dupuy, Golden Square.

2013 Madeline Stewart, Gisborne.

2014 Chelsea Sartori, Kangaroo Flat.

2015 Abbey Ryan, Golden Square.

2016 Ruby Barkmeyer, Kangaroo Flat.

2017 Melinda Luke, Gisborne.

2018 Bree Heiden, Golden Square.

2019 Chloe Langley, South Bendigo.

2020 No award, COVID-19 pandemic.

2021 No award, COVID-19 pandemic.

2022 Shae Clifford, Sandhurst.

2023 Charlotte Sexton, Sandhurst.