The memory of Blaine Rozs was honoured in a significant way with the introduction of the inaugural Blaine Rozs Memorial Award at the recent St George Illawarra Dragons' presentation night.
Established and presented by Dragons Under-20s trainer Ian Campbell and Blaine Rozs's mother Michele Richardson, the award is given to a under 20s Dragons squad member who demonstrates the qualities that Blaine possessed, which included dedication, commitment and hard work.
“Blaine was a pretty special kid and he was very well mannered and polite” Campbell said.
“This is the first year of this award and we hope the club will make it a perpetual and an ongoing award.”
Under 20s players Caleb Campbell and Nowra junior Jason Gillard were nominated for the award, but coach Wayne Collins was the inaugural recipient of the award for his high respect from the playing group and bringing the squad together in 2017.
Rozs’s love of rugby league began at the age of six when he started with the Mittagong Lions.
“Right from an early age he was very passionate about rugby league and when he played at Mittagong he was known as the steam roller,” his mum Michele Richardson said.
“He was a hard runner of the football and his dream was to one day play for the St George Illawarra Dragons and NSW.”
At the age of 13 Rozs continued his strong junior career with the Berry-Shoalhaven Heads Magpies before playing Harold Matthews and SG Ball for the Illawarra Steelers.
In 2013 Rozs was awarded the Holden Cup coaches award whilst playing for the St George Illawarra Dragons Under 20s squad before he tragically lost his life in a farming accident on December 1 2014.
Michele Richardson believes her son’s motivation and dedication to the greatest game of all will live on.
“It means the world to us that Blaine is being honoured in this way,” she said.
“Three years since his passing and so many people are still impacted by his story and his legacy.”
Mittagong Lions and Berry-Shoalhaven Heads Magpies will play each other in the Blaine Rozs Memorial pre-season match in March.