Rabbitohs hooker Damien Cook has been awarded the George Piggins Medal for 2019, capping off another fantastic season which sees him crowned the Best and Fairest player for the second year in a row.
In his 26 appearances for South Sydney this season, Cook scored three tries, had 18 try assists and further developed his short kicking game by forcing eight line drop outs.
Cook’s strongest attribute - his running game - continued to build from last year, averaging the most running metres for a number nine in the competition, with just a tick under 80 metres per game.
It wasn’t just with ball-in-hand that saw Cook step up in the vital moments of a game. Who could forget that crucial try-saver on a flying Corey Oates in Round 23? There’s no doubting his motor, having hit the 50+ tackle mark on nine occasions this year.
His well-rounded game sees him as the benchmark for dummy-halves having now cemented his spot in the Blues jersey after another State of Origin series victory, and recently again being selected in the Kangaroos squad to play New Zealand.
I am truly honoured to receive this award. To have George here to present was truly something special.
The Best and Fairest award is named after Rabbitohs Club legend George Piggins, who was a premiership-winning and international player, coach and official over a 40-year period. He was also one of the leading figures in the Club's fight for reinstatement to the National Rugby League in the early 2000s.
Mr Piggins was on hand at the event with Head Coach Wayne Bennett to present Cook with the award.
The South Sydney Rabbitohs would like to congratulate Damien on his stellar season and his awards.
2002 - Paul Stringer
2003 – Bryan Fletcher
2004 – Ashley Harrison
2005 – Peter Cusack
2006 – David Fa'alogo
2007 – Roy Asotasi
2008 – Luke Stuart
2009 – John Sutton
2010 – Issac Luke
2011 – Nathan Merritt
2012 – John Sutton
2013 – Greg Inglis and John Sutton
2014 – Sam Burgess
2015 – Greg Inglis
2016 – Sam Burgess
2017 – Sam Burgess
2018 - Damien Cook