There will be no red carpet for the ILT 2020 Sports Awards this year.
Like anything involving a major gathering, the iconic awards, which were first staged in 1953, will be held online this year.
Presented annually by Sport Southland, the awards are owned by the Southland Amateur Sports Trust (SAST), and a joint decision was made to host a virtual event.
Sport Southland chief executive Brendon McDermott said while it was disappointing they won’t have the opportunity to join together in the traditional way, “it’s really important that we are able to celebrate Southland’s sporting achievements over the past 12 months.”
The awards will be presented across a number of online platforms, including websites and social media to ensure as much exposure as possible.
“It’s no secret that sport has been placed under immense pressure by the Covid-19 pandemic, so we hope that this event will go some way towards providing something positive for the sector to focus on,” he said.
Categories for this year’s awards include the NZME Masters Achievement of the Year, Ricoh Southland Coach of the Year, BDO Administrator of the Year, Southland Kia Team of the Year, Vodafone Junior Sportsperson of the Year, Creation Signs Official of the Year, Southland Times People’s Choice and ILT Senior Sportsperson of the Year.
The Creation Signs Official of the Year category has also been widened to include team support members like medical staff.
The qualification period for these awards runs from April 1, 2019 to March 31, 2020.
Nominations for this year’s awards open on Wednesday, May 6 and can be accessed through the Sport Southland website or ILT Southland Sports Awards website.
Nominations can be made by national or regional sports organisations, clubs or coaches. Family or self-nominations will also be accepted.