nib Newcastle Knights fullback Tamika Upton has capped off an outstanding season by being named the winner of the Knights 2023 NRLW Player of the Year award.
The Player of the Year title is the latest in a long list of accolades for the 26-year-old, capping off a seven day stretch in which she claimed the Dally M Medal for NRLW Player of the Year, won a fourth NRLW Premiership and a second straight Karyn Murphy Medal, and achieved Australian selection for the first time.
Upton crossed for seven tries in 11 matches this season, including two in Sunday’s Grand Final win over the Gold Coast Titans at Accor Stadium.
The Queenslander has won 15 out of 16 matches played since joining the Knights from the Brisbane Broncos ahead of the 2022 NRLW season.
The superstar fullback reflected on her incredible season in front of teammates, coaches, sponsors and staff.
"I'm incredible lucky to be amongst a great team, we have a great system here," Upton said.
"The premiership was definitely the highlight of the year.
Upton on winning the NRLW Player of the Year Award
"We stuck solid as a group and stuck to the game plan, around Round 2 or 3 we had an open chat that we weren't playing the way we wanted to play.
"From there on we played some great footy and we all bought in, plus believing we could do it.
"Ronald has done an incredible job and the staff always have our best interest at heart."
Upton’s streak continued with the Knights vice-captain sharing the Player’s Player Award with 2022 co-Player of the Year Shanice Parker.
Parker was once again a mainstay of the Knights line up this season, crossing for a crucial try in the Grand Final as well as recording critical doubles in regular season wins over the Brisbane Broncos and Cronulla Sharks.
Jillaroo Yasmin Clydsdale was honoured with two awards, taking out the NRLW Coaches Award and the NRLW Gladiator of the Year Award handed out by the Once a Knight Old Boys, for her ultra consistent performances on both sides of the ball.
Junior Matilda turned NRLW star Sheridan Gallagher claimed Rookie of the Year honours, starting the season with just two games of Rugby League to her name and finishing it with seven tries in 11 appearances and a premiership ring.
Proud Kurri Kurri product Kayla Romaniuk was recognised for her work promoting and encouraging girls to take up junior rugby league, being named the winner of the Knights Community Player of the Year award which also saw her nominated for the Veronica White Medal.
And Tiana Davison rounded out the awards by taking out the Knights Thrive Award, awarded to the player who consistently lives the club values and is team first in everything they do.
nib Newcastle Knights NRLW Award Winners 2023
Thrive Award: Tiana Davison
Community Player of the Year: Kayla Romaniuk
Gladiator of the Year: Yasmin Clydsdale
Rookie of the Year: Sheridan Gallagher
Coaches Award: Yasmin Clydsdale
Players’ Player Award: Tamika Upton & Shanice Parker
Player of the Year Award: Tamika Upton