The NRL iron man Luke Douglas is the Aquis Gold Coast Titans’ Paul Broughton Medal winner for 2015 after yet another consistent season, his 10th in the National Rugby League.
The popular club man who has never missed a match through injury since making his debut for Cronulla Sharks in round two of 2006, beat fellow forward Ryan James who began the season brilliantly, and flying centre James Roberts, for the Titans’ best player accolade.
The 29-year-old from Yamba on the NSW north coast accumulated 22 points from the 3-2-1 voting system allocated by the coaching staff in each of the Titans’ 24 games.
James, who led decisively after 13 rounds, was second with 19 points ahead of Roberts, the Titans members’ player of the year, third on 14. Agnatius Paasi finished fast to come in fourth with 12 points.
The medal is named after foundation club chairman and passionate league servant for over six decades, Paul Broughton, and has been held by the likes of international players Luke Bailey (three times), Anthony Laffranchi, Nate Myles and Greg Bird (full list below).
Douglas, 29, has played 239 NRL games and represented Country Origin and Scotland and has an extraordinary record of never missing a match through injury despite his high workrate at the coal face of the game in the front row. His only absence has been when he missed three matches at the end of last season after being inadvertently caught up in the Sharks’ ASADA affair of 2011.
He is widely respected within the game, not just within the Titans’ club, for his professionalism, the spirit in which he plays the game and also conducts himself off the field.
“The medal is a fitting reward for Luke’s consistency and professionalism,” said head coach Neil Henry.
“He is one of rugby league’s most dedicated and durable warriors, a genuine team man who is a model professional for any aspiring player in how he prepares himself to be able to do the best job possible week in and week out.
“He was among our best players most weeks and again didn’t miss a game. His value is not just his workrate and reliability on the field but his contribution off the field as well.”
Douglas is also the club’s nomination for the NRL’s Ken Stephen Medal for his off-field contribution, to be announced at the end of September.
The top 11 players on the voting list were:
22 - Luke Douglas
19 – Ryan James
14 – James Roberts
12 – Agnatius Paasi
11 – Aidan Sezer, Greg Bird
9 – Daniel Mortimer
8 – David Mead, Nene Macdonald
6 – Eddy Pettybourne
5 - Kane Elgey
‘Previous Paul Broughton Medal winners:
2014: Beau Falloon
2013: Greg Bird
2012: Nate Myles
2011: Luke Bailey
2010: Luke Bailey
2009: Nathan Friend
2008: Preston Campbell
2007: Luke Bailey/Anthony Laffranchi
OTHER AWARD WINNERS FOR 2015:
Members’ Most Valuable Player: James Roberts
The Preston Award: Anthony Don
XXXX Try of the Year: James Roberts (round 23 v Bulldogs)
Rookie of the Year: Kane Elgey
Community Award: Ben Ridge
NYC Player of the Year: Shaun Hudson
NYC Players’ Player: Oshae Tuiasau
NYC True Titans: Hayden Schwass