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Cyclist Meares is sportswoman of the year

  • Cyclist Meares is sportswoman of the year

Cyclist Anna Meares has won the Women's Health Woman of the Year award for the second time.

And, in a first in the award's five-year history, a hall of fame has been started, with swimming legend Susie O'Neill as its first honoree.

Women's Health magazine editor and awards organiser Felicity Harley said 2015 had been an extraordinary year for Australian sportswomen.

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In choosing Meares for a second time, Ms Harley said the judging panel selected the person who had outshone other athletes.

"Not just about sport, but also how she advocates women in sport," Harley told AAP.

Other award recipients included BMX rider Caroline Buchanan, who was given fair fighter award and netballer Laura Geitz, who was crowned leadership legend.

Australian Womensport and Recreation Association president Carol Fox said the winners demonstrated the breadth of success on the world stage of the nation's rich pool of elite sportswomen.

"I find it sad that, despite their success, they often have to fight for pay and conditions that their male counterparts enjoy," she said, noting the Matildas' pay battle with Football Federation Australia.

The awards have grown from 80 people in a room at the MCG to a much larger event this year.

"I wanted to rival the Brownlow," Harley said.

A FULL LIST OF THE AWARD WINNERS:

* Women's Health Sports Woman of the Year - Anna Meares, cycling

* Moment of the Year - Minjee Lee, golf

* Fair Fighter - Caroline Buchanan, BMX

* Local Heroine - Jordan Mercer, ironwoman

* Leadership Legend - Laura Geitz, netball

* A-Team of the Year - Diamonds, netball

* A-Team of the Year (special recognition) - Matildas, soccer

* Person of Sporting Words - Amanda Shalala, ABC

* One to Watch - Eleanor Patterson, high jump

* Service to the Sport - Lydia Lassila, aerial skiing

* Contribution to the Community - Amna Karra-Hassan, AFL

* Outstanding Woman in Sport - Ellyse Perry, cricket/soccer

* Hall of Fame - Susie O'Neill OAM, swimming

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