Top sports stories for 2017

This year has been an eventful one for sport in the Southern Highlands.

From the highs to the lows, here is our list of the top 10 sport stories for 2017.

Highlands team claims Burns Cup for the first time

The Highlands side has lifted the Burns Cup for the first time.

The team competed for the trophy at Goulburn, Nowra and Berry from October 15 to 22.

The Highlands team was previously merged with the Goulburn, and the team debuted as an individual side last year.

WELL PLAYED: For the first time ever the Bowral Blacks second grade team has won the Illawarra Rugby Union grand final. Photo: Mindy Hindmarsh

WELL PLAYED: For the first time ever the Bowral Blacks second grade team has won the Illawarra Rugby Union grand final. Photo: Mindy Hindmarsh

Historic win for the Bowral Blacks

Bowral Blacks lifted the second grade Illawarra premiership trophy for the first time in the club’s history on Saturday.

The Blacks claimed a 38-10 victory against Wollongong Vikings at WIN Stadium on September 2.

Coach Pete Burt said the grand final win was a reward for years of hard work from club members.

 Ban: Ricky Garard. Picture: Crossfit Games

Ban: Ricky Garard. Picture: Crossfit Games

Crossfit star Ricky Garard banned after positive drug test

Southern Highlands crossfit athlete Ricky Garard has been banned until 2021 after a “positive” drug test, the world governing body has announced.

Garard finished third at the World Crossfit Games in August, the best ever result by an Australian male.

CrossFit Games general manager Justin Bergh said in a statement the test result does “not appear to be accidental”.

END OF AN ERA: Lorraine McNamara, Nick Bayfield, event founder Huw Kingston and Patrick McNamara at the final Highland Fling on November 12. Photo: Emily Bennett

END OF AN ERA: Lorraine McNamara, Nick Bayfield, event founder Huw Kingston and Patrick McNamara at the final Highland Fling on November 12. Photo: Emily Bennett

Thousands turn out for the Highland Fling’s last hurrah

The final Highland Fling went out with a bang.

About 1200 riders took part in the ride, which varied in distance with 23 kilometre, 55 kilometre, 110 kilometre and 160 kilometre routes.

About 2000 supporters showed up on the day to support the riders as they crossed the finish line.

Daniel Alvaro. Photo courtesy of Parramatta Eels

Daniel Alvaro. Photo courtesy of Parramatta Eels

Daniel Alvaro ready for NRL finals

Daniel Alvaro is ready for his first NRL finals series.

The former Mittagong Lion is now a regular first grade player for Parramatta Eels and will take to the field against Melbourne on Saturday afternoon in the second of the qualifying finals.

The Eels finished fourth and will travel to Melbourne to take on minor premiers the Storm.

This was not the only exciting news for Daniel Alvaro. Alvaro was selected in Italian World Cup squad in 2017:

Daniel Alvaro could soon be donning an Italian jersey.

The former Mittagong Lion has been selected in Italy’s 2017 Rugby League World Cup Squad.

Alvaro, who plays for the Parramatta Eels in the NRL, could play in his first World Cup.

ON THE RIGHT TRACK: John Morris will be an Assistant Track Referee/Assistant Video Referee at the Commonwealth Games. Photo: supplied.

ON THE RIGHT TRACK: John Morris will be an Assistant Track Referee/Assistant Video Referee at the Commonwealth Games. Photo: supplied.

John Morris hits the right track

Next April dozens of athletes will proudly represent Australia at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games. Standing alongside them, just as proud, will be a number of NSW technical officials.

Highlander John Morris will assume one of these important roles during the games.

Mr Morris has been selected as Assistant Track Referee/Assistant Video Referee for the athletics events after impressing judges at the Australian Junior and Open National Championships.

QUEEN'S RELAY: Bowral's Victor Schweikert will bear the baton in the Queen's Relay ahead of the Commonwealth Games. Photo: Madeline Crittenden.

QUEEN'S RELAY: Bowral's Victor Schweikert will bear the baton in the Queen's Relay ahead of the Commonwealth Games. Photo: Madeline Crittenden.

Ready to pass the baton

In 1958 Victor Schweikert competed in the British Empire and Commonwealth Games, in 2018 he will be part of the Commonwealth Games once again.

Mr Schweikert will be the only Highlander to take part in the prestigious Queen’s Baton Relay ahead of the games.

Now 80, Mr Schweikert won a silver medal for rowing at age 21 during the British Empire and Commonwealth Games.

ACCOMPLISHED: About 100 people formed a guard of honour for runner Norma Wallett, who finished her 100th parkrun in Bowral on Saturday, October 14. Photo: Barry Smith

ACCOMPLISHED: About 100 people formed a guard of honour for runner Norma Wallett, who finished her 100th parkrun in Bowral on Saturday, October 14. Photo: Barry Smith

A world record for Norma Wallett

Norma Wallett has become the oldest female in the world to run 100 parkruns.

About 100 people formed a guard of honour and cheered on 88-year-old Wallett as she crossed the finish line on Saturday.

Wallett has been involved with Bowral Parkrun from the first day it started, and it has been a big part of her life and running training throughout the year.

GOING PLACES: Gristwood will embark on an 18-day tour of the United States and Canada, as a part of the national under 20s side in 2018. Photo: Contributed

GOING PLACES: Gristwood will embark on an 18-day tour of the United States and Canada, as a part of the national under 20s side in 2018. Photo: Contributed

Tirawa Gristwood’s international opportunity

Moss Vale athlete Tirawa Gristwood has been selected for the Indigenous Australian Invitational Rugby team.

Gristwood will embark on an 18-day tour of the United States and Canada, as a part of the national under 20s side in 2018.

The rugby player will visit to Los Angeles, New York and Vancouver in his travels.

Paceman Dominic O’Shannessy was announced as a member of the Australian U17 team. Photo: Contributed

Paceman Dominic O’Shannessy was announced as a member of the Australian U17 team. Photo: Contributed

O’Shannessy earns his place in the Australian team

Paceman Dominic O’Shannessy has been announced as a member of the Australian U17 team after cementing his reputation as one of the country’s hottest junior pace bowlers at the Australian U17 Championships in Queensland.

Playing for the ACT/NSW country side, O’Shannessy was the carnival’s top wicket taker, claiming 16 scalps at an average of 13.63. His best performance was 4-41, including a hat-trick.

O’Shannessy was presented with an Australian Baggy Green Cap in Brisbane last night by Cricket Australia junior coach and former Australian pace bowler Ryan Harris.

OPPORTUNITY: Bowral High School's Georgie Lewis will play in the San Diego Surf College Cup Showcase from November 24 to 26. Photo: Emily Bennett

OPPORTUNITY: Bowral High School's Georgie Lewis will play in the San Diego Surf College Cup Showcase from November 24 to 26. Photo: Emily Bennett

Girl goes global: Bowral High School student to play in San Diego

Bowral High School’s Georgie Lewis is kicking goals.

The 16-year-old has been accepted into the San Diego Surf College Cup Showcase.

Lewis will be one of the youngest players to travel to the United States with the NSW under 17s team.

Did we miss a story? Email emily.bennett@fairfaxmedia.com.au and we’ll add it to the list.

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