Spirit of Sport: Looking back on a decade of success

Posted on November 24, 2020 by

As part of the NSWIS Spirit of Sport initiative, we are taking a look back at the last ten years of highlights and successes achieved by our athletes.

With 2020 international competitions largely drawing to a halt due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s NSWIS Awards Night was unfortunately cancelled. However, this has given us the opportunity to not only celebrate the adaptability and innovation of our sport programs in 2020 but also reflect on the significant success our athletes have achieved over the past decade, which have helped position NSWIS as a world-class high performance organisation.

While there were numerous achievements each year, we’ve painstakingly selected one of our favourite results from each calendar year.

Read more about our entire performance history spanning back to 1996.


James Magnussen becomes the first Australian to win the men’s 100m freestyle world title at the 2011 FINA World Aquatics Championships.


Jacqueline Freney wins an incredible eight gold medals in the pool at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, becoming the most successful athlete at a single Paralympic Games in history. Freney took out the women’s S7 50m, 100m and 400m freestyle, 100m backstroke, 50m butterfly, 200m individual medley, and swam in the victorious 4x100m freestyle and medley (34 points) relays.

Also in 2012:

NSWIS sailers take home three gold medals at the London Olympic Games in the men’s Laser, 49er and 470 events.


Alex Pullin defends his title at the 2013 FIS Snowboarding World Championships to become the first Australian athlete to win back-to-back winter sports world titles.


Torah Bright wins her second Winter Olympic Games medal with a silver in the women’s snowboard half-pipe event to go with her gold from 2010.


Also in 2014: 

Jessica Fox creates history by winning gold in the women’s K1 and C1 events at the 2014 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships, becoming the first female in history to win the world championship double.



The Australian Women’s Netball Team, featuring seven NSWIS athletes, wins its 11th world title at the 2015 Netball World Cup.


Maddison Elliot won three gold medals in the pool at the Rio Paralympic Games, taking out the women’s S8 50m (world record) and 100m (Paralympic record) freestyle events, and swimming as part of the triumphant women’s 4×100 freestyle relay (34 points) team.

Also in 2016: 

Tom Burton becomes the Men’s Laser Olympic Champion in Rio, making it back-to-back golds in the event for Australia and NSWIS representatives (following Tom Slingsby’s success in 2012).


James Turner becomes a three-time world champion by taking out the men’s T36 200m, 400m and 800m events at the 2017 World Para Athletics Championships in London.


NSWIS athletes Jarryd Hughes (Snowboard Cross) and Matthew Graham (Mogul Skiing) win silver medals at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games before Melissa Perrine claimed two bronze medals in the women’s para-alpine events at the Winter Paralympic Games.

Also in 2018:

Erik Horrie wins an incredible fifth-consecutive world championship title in the men’s PR1 single scull event.


Lauren Parker completes an incredible journey from her life-altering training accident in 2017; overcoming numerous surgeries and injury setbacks to be crowned the 2019 Women’s Para Triathlon (PTWC) World Champion.


Amanda Reid defends her women’s C2 time trial title with a world record performance before taking out the scratch race to become a dual track cycling world champion.

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