Congratulations to Georgia Pexton, Funmi Fadoju and Amy Carter who were runners-up at the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) Stars Awards 2021.
The Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme is a Sport England funded partnership between athletes, education institutions and sport national governing bodies to help athletes in education get the very best from their sporting and academic careers without having to choose between the two.
After an unprecedented year for everyone, TASS wanted to celebrate young sportspeople’s achievements and received a record number of nominations across five hugely competitive categories.
An external judging panel considered the entries before settling on the shortlisted athletes with Pexton in the ‘Most Determined’ category, Fadoju in the ‘Most Potential’ category and Carter in the ‘Athlete of the Year’ category.
The winners were announced via social media on Wednesday 11 August with Pexton, Fadoju and Carter just missing out on the accolades.
Georgia Pexton – Most Determined (shortlisted)
Awarded to a TASS athlete who has overcome challenges or demonstrated resilience in order to pursue their sport and/or study.
In November 2019, Pexton ruptured her anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and faced many additional challenges of rehabbing during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns.
Pexton communicated consistently with the support team around her, including Roses Academy staff, and showed incredible focus and determination to get back on court in great shape.
She achieved her goal of playing in the 2021 Netball Performance League (NPL), completing her first full game in 552 days in May.
Funmi Fadoju – Most Potential (shortlisted)
Awarded to a TASS athlete who is deemed to be a “one to watch” in the future in either their sport and/or study.
Fadoju showed glimpses of her quality in front of audiences in 2020 and at Netball Europe 2019, but this year she has been able to show her stuff over the course of a full Vitality Netball Superleague (VNSL) season.
The teenager was voted the best U21 performer in the Superleague this term due to her displays at the heart of a London Pulse defence which only grew stronger as the season progressed. She finished the league top for deflections (84), fourth for intercepts (38) and fifth for turnovers (62).
Fadoju has also been selected for the 2021-22 Roses Futures programme.
Amy Carter – Athlete of the Year (shortlisted)
Carter is inspirational to so many on a dual education sport career, having previously picked up the Athlete of the Year accolade in 2019. She successfully combines studying medicine at the University of Manchester with her training and playing commitments.
In October 2020, she was selected for the three-game series against New Zealand, playing in two of the fixtures against the world champions.
She represented Manchester Thunder during the 2021 Vitality Netball Superleague season as the team finished third.
Carter has been re-selected for the 2021-22 Roses Futures programme.
Discussing the support of TASS and the awards, Roses Academy Head Coach Sheonah Forbes said: “The partnership England Netball has with TASS is vital in supporting the next crop of Vitality Roses.
“It enables athletes to gain support whilst in education in strength & conditioning, physio, lifestyle, nutrition and psychology.
“Everyone has found it tough at times over the last 18 months and I am super proud to see these three athletes flying the flag for not only netball but for the young generation.”