The IFA Awards were launched in 2019, and the latest edition included 15 categories including best player, best picture, media work and a lifetime achievement award.
More than 280 proposals sports were made by individuals, clubs or associations for the 15 categories.
Tanja Bognar from Switzerland is IFA 2022 FEMALE PLAYER OF THE YEAR.
Tanja won the Swiss Women’s Field Championship for the third time in a row with SVD Diepoldsau-Schmitter in 2022, also won the 2022 Swiss Women’s Indoor Championship for the third time in a row with SVD Diepoldsau-Schmitter, came second with the Swiss women’s national team at the 2022 World Games and is actively involved in Diepoldsau’s youth teams.
Tanja is the outstanding player of her club team as well as the national team, but is also extremely team-oriented. She interprets her leadership role with great social competence and, for example, always thanks the organisers, the live stream team, etc. for their commitment. In addition to her sporting career, she takes on responsibility in the youth sector.
Patrick Thomas from Germany is the IFA 2022 MALE PLAYER OF THE YEAR .
Patrick is The World Games 2022 champion with Germany, European Champion with Team Germany, as well as IFA World Tour Finals Champion, German Champion Indoor & Outdoor and European Champion Indoor and finally European Vice-Champion Outdoors with his team TSV Pfungstadt. As the main striker from Germany and TSV Pfungstadt Patrick only lost 1 crucial game this year. He won 6 out of 7 gold medal matches in a very full calendar year.
The IFA 2022 FEMALE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR Award goes to Amber Nicole Rauh (USA). The year the Award Committee not only focused on sporting issues, but also took into consideration speed of development, activities of court and overall performance.
Amber played in World Games and Pan American games. She made the US team with less than 6 months of training. At the Pan American Fistball Games she was the captain of team USA with just over 1 year playing. Furthermore, she was featured on the World Games Takeover Tuesday on instagram.
The IFA 2022 MALE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR Award goes to Matthias Spornberger from SSV Bozen in Italy
Matthias played at the European Championships in Vaihingen in both the male U18 and the male U21 teams and took part in The World Games. He has been in the Italian junior team for years and plays the role of playmaker. He has improved from year to year and always gives a good performance against the “strong nations”.
The IFA 2021 REFEREE OF THE YEAR Award goes to Marcel Meier from Switzerland.
Marcel has been refereeing international Fistball events such as the European Championships in 2000 and 2004 as well as the 2011 World Championships (including semi-finals) for men for 23 years. In 2022, he was called upon to officials in two international finals.
First, at the Men’s Champions Cup in the 2022 Hall between TSV Pfungstadt and Union Tigers Vöcklabruck, and then in October at the World Tour Finals, where he refereed both the emotional preliminary round match between Pfungstadt and Novo Hamburgo and the final match between the two teams. And he did an outstanding job in both finals.
The IFA 2022 COACH OF THE YEAR Award goes to Anton Lässer from Switzerland
As a coach, Anton led the SVD Diepoldsau-Schmitter women’s team to the national top. In 2022, he won the 3rd consecutive indoor championship title with the women. In addition, the team won 2022 won an international medal for the first time at the EFA Women’s Champions Cup in Calw (3rd place).
For more than 30 years, Toni has spent several days a week on the fistball court or in sports. As a coach, he accompanies the U14s (Swiss champions) and the U16s (Swiss runners-up) to the match days.
In 2015, Anton Lässer took over the Swiss women’s national team. After the two medals (bronze in 2016 and silver in 2018), he coached the young Swiss team to the finals of the 2022 World Games. With his training sessions, tactical guidelines and precise and his precise analysis of the opponents, he optimally prepared the team for the tasks ahead. In the final, Switzerland even took a 2:0 lead against the big favourites from Germany.
On the short list for the IFA 2022 Media Award we have been Klemens Kronsteiner, Hajo Wolff and Sport1 for the broadcasting of the World Games 2022 where the broadcast of the female gold medal matches – as in 2017 – achieved the highest viewing figures of all broadcasts of The World Games sports, Kyle Ejsmont, the fistball.tv commentator and the International World Games Association (IWGA) and host broadcaster ISB for the production of the fistball matches at TWG 2022. The award was dedicated to Ursula Romero representing host broadcaster ISB and The World Games Association.
In the category IFA 2022 Best Picture of the Year IFA received more than 100 proposals. In an joint public and jury voting the Moritz Kaufmann from Germany was elected as winner.
The IFA 2022 ACTIVITY AWARD goes to Fistball Denmark.
For more than a decade, Denmark was an integral part of the fistball community – whether in the men’s or junior men’s game. But after 2007, fistball in Denmark fell into a sleep – from which it was kissed awake in 2017. Since then, thanks to Team Norschleswig, the Danish fistballers have presented themselves as one of the most active fistball associations in the world.
Men and women regularly take part in international fistball events, and great importance is attached to youth development, including participation in national competitions in neighbouring Schleswig-Holstein (Germany).
In addition, the Danish Fistball Association hosted just at the beginning of January 2023 the U19 European Indoor Championships.
The IFA 2022 SCHOOL SPORTS AWARD goes to Federico Fritz, Nancy Adamoli and Pablo Zarate from Argentina with the project Faustball en las esculelas (Fistball in the schools).
The project consists in workshops for school teachers, open classes with teachers and students and presentation of the work and experiences of the program in different physical education conferences. The program runs in association with The Olympic Committee of Argentina, inside the “sport initiation program” in the YOG frame.
The project currently supports over 10 schools and 7 clubs in 5 different cities in Argentina.
FELE present FAUSTBALL as a discipline that due to its technique and facilitated practice characteristics, a significant school body experience that positively impacts the link with the movement culture.
In this way, it promotes an area of inclusion, integration, admits and values diversity, since allows all students to interact in the same class without the gender condition, motor ability and differences are not a difficulty.
The IFA 2022 OLYMPIC EDUCATION IN FISTBALL AWARD goes to José Roberto Vinharski from Federação Paranaense de Punhobol
The Fistball Federation of Paraná – BRA in partnership with the Municipal Education Secretary introduced Fistball in more than 4 cities, 40 schools and over 70 physical Educator Teachers. They also held for the first time ever the “School Fistball Festival”. In total they have more than 300 kids and adolescents. The program promote Fistball as tool of human being development through the practical application of the Olympic Core Values of Respect, Excellence ands Friendship.
Already since 2019 IFA awards a Women in Sport prize.
The IFA 2022 WOMEN IN SPORT AWARD goes to TWG women´s team of the New Zealand Fistball Association
The team reached the 5th position in the final ranking but that is not why the team was nominated.
The team made all the way – a more than 30 hours trip to Birmingham (Alabama/USA) – without any public funding and secured the representation of Fistball teams from three continents at the World Games.
IFA SUSTAINABILITY AWARD goes to TSV Jona from Switzerland.
In 2017 IFA introduced an IFA Sustainability Strategy. With the 2021 established IFA Sustainability Award IFA would like to raise awareness and to promote best practice.
For many years, TSV Jona Faustball is using a well-coordinated “washing-up crew” ensures that there are always enough clean plates, cups, glasses and cutlery available to feed all hungry and thirsty players and spectators.
In addition, waste is consistently managed: Suppliers are integrated into the waste cycle and take back the transport containers and packs almost without exception. The remaining waste is divided and sorted into plastic, cardboard and paper and general waste.
Ecological action is also a priority in turf maintenance. Since the Grünfeld fistball stadium is located in a groundwater protection area, it goes without saying that only environmentally friendly fertilisers are used that do not pollute the environment. The same applies to the colours used for the field markings – these are harmless to humans, animals and plants.
But what really catches the eye at TSV Jona Faustball is the grandstand roof. Since the beginning of 2018, the integrated photovoltaic system with its 190 square metres has been supplying a lot of electricity.
A total of around 140 megawatt hours (MWh) have already been produced, which corresponds to the energy consumption of around 30 single-family homes in one year. A total of 73 tonnes of CO2 have already been saved.
The IFA 2022 SOCIAL ENGAGEMENT AWARD goes to Sociedade de Ginástica de Porto Alegre in Brazil. The club took Fistball to the favelas of Rio Grande do Sul in Brazil. An initiative we would like to honor.
The IFA 2022 LIFETIME AWARD goes posthumous to Gerhard Strasser from Austria.
Gerhard Starasser, who founded the club ASKÖ Seekirchen in 1980 and has been the clubs chairman for over 40 years. He has dedicated his life to bringing people together through fistball, has brought hundreds of kids to enjoy our sport and has encouraged them to give their best on and off court. And he was one of the founders of the “Jugendeuropapokal” now an European Fistball Association (EFA) event.
His ambition and thrive has not only pushed his club Seekirchen but many say has revived fistball in Salzburg as a sport but also as a community.
In December we learned of his sudden death that´s why we honor him today with the IFA 2022 Lifetime Award posthoumously.
The basis for the awards are the IFA Honorary Regulations. The IFA Awards are presented on the basis of a jury decision or public vote appointed by the IFA Board of Directors. The IFA received over 280 proposals from almost 80 individuals/clubs/associations. The jury is composed by members of the board and discussed all proposals in detail.
The award was announced in December on the IFA channels. Proposals with a short justification or a link in the case of photos can be submitted by individuals, clubs and associations.