MURRAYVILLE footballer Michael Worsman is the 2012 Mallee Football League Mail medallist.
He was crowned the league’s best and fairest player at a presentation held at Murrayville on Sunday.
Worsman finished ahead of Border Downs-Tintinara’s Patrick Barrett (19 votes) and Karoonda’s Ben Quinn (17) winning the award with an impressive 24 votes.
The Bulldogs’ playing coach, in his second year at Murrayville, said he had enjoyed a good season after a horrendous run with injury in previous seasons.
He said despite having to travel over the border to play, he enjoyed the community spirit on display in Mallee football.
“Coming from playing in Adelaide, sometimes you feel you are just a number on a sheet, but here you feel like a part of the community,” he said.
Despite celebrating his personal achievement, Worsman sent a strong message of the importance of the surivival of football clubs and the challenges country clubs faced.
He said the survival of the Murrayville Football Club was crucial to the community and the wider Mallee Football League.
“Murrayville faces the biggest challenge of survival,” he said.
“We’ve got the smallest population base (in the league) and we are the furtherest away.
“The problem is, once it is gone, it’s gone - if it folds, it won’t come back a few years later, so we need everyone getting behind it.”
He said the dedication of people like Des Sporn, who was awarded a Merit Award for outstanding service to the Murrayville Football Club and Mallee Football League at the count, was the reason the club had lasted so long, despite the challenges it had faced.
“It would be strange to imagine a situtation where a kid can’t run across the road and play at his local football club ... hopefully it never gets there,” he said.