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Posted by RLPA

September 16, 2022

24 NRLW Contenders for the Players’ Champion

The Rugby League Players Association (RLPA) is pleased to announce the Contenders list for the Players’ Champion award  – outlining the four players from each team in the NRLW competition who are eligible for the prestigious individual honour.

The winners of both Players’ Champion awards will be announced during Channel 9’s Grand Final coverage on October 2. The five Finalists for The Players’ Champion will be announced on September 22.

Past recipients (previously called the Elite Women’s Player of the Year) Simaima Taufa (Parramatta Eels), Sam Bremner (Sydney Roosters), and Georgia Hale (Gold Coast Titans) feature on the star-studded shortlist.

Lina Caccamo, the RLPA’s GM of Elite Women and International Relations, praised the 24 Contenders from the NRLW competition, chosen from a high quality field of players.

“Once again, NRLW players have shown the world that they have the talent, determination, skill and toughness to produce rugby league games of an elite and excellent standard.

“We don’t doubt that it was a tough job for each team to put forward four of their teammates to be Contenders for The Players’ Champion. However, the 24 players chosen are all worthy Contenders and have all made great contributions to rugby league by keeping our fans entertained and fervent in their support.

“It won’t be an easy choice for players once voting opens, but we look forward to awarding The Players’ Champion trophy to a very worthy winner.”

The 24 Contenders for The Players’ Champion


Tarryn Aiken

Jaime Chapman 

Shenae Ciesiolka 

Julia Robinson


Isabelle Kelly

Raecene McGregor

Keilee Joseph

Sam Bremner


Holli Wheeler

Kezie Apps

Page McGregor

Tara McGrath-West


Steph Hancock

Shannon Mato

Georgia Hale

Evania Pelite


Tamika Upton

Caitlan Johnston

Millie Boyle

Jesse Southwell


Simaima Taufa

Rikeya Horne

Ellie Johnston

Tiana Penitani

About The Players’ Champion voting

  • The Contenders’ list is made up of four players from each club that are nominated to be eligible for The Players’ Champion award. 
  • RLPA Delegates at each Club put forward the three best players from their own team. 
  • An RLPA Working Group nominates a fourth player to round out the nomination process.
  • In total, 24 players (four from each team) are eligible to receive votes in The Players’ Champion poll.
  • Voting is open to all contracted NRLW players, with each player selecting opposition players using a 3/2/1 format.
  • Players are not penalised for any suspensions and/or fines received during the course of the season. 
  • Players cannot vote for their teammates or themselves.
  • The player with the most number of votes is awarded The Players’ Champion.

The Players’ Awards will also include a Rookie of the Year, a Dream Team, and the Dennis Tutty Award for both NRL and NRLW players.

Previous winners of The Players’ Champion

Previously Elite Women’s Player of the Year (below)

  • 2018 Simaima Taufa
  • 2017 Simaima Taufa (Australia) & Sarina Fiso (New Zealand)
  • 2016 Samantha Bremner (Australia) & Georgia Hale (New Zealand)

The Players’ Awards schedule announced on Channel 9

  • September 18: Dennis Tutty Award (NRL & NRLW)
  • September 20: The Players’ Dream Team (NRL)
  • September 21: The Players’ Champion Finalists (NRL)
  • September 22: The Players’ Champion Finalists (NRLW)
  • September 23: Players’ Rookie of the Year Finalists (NRL & NRLW)
  • September 25: Players’ Rookie of the Year (NRL & NRLW)
  • September 28: The Players’ Dream Team (NRLW)
  • October 2: The Players’ Champion (NRL & NRLW)
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