Smith wins young player of the year award

TOMMY Smith has been named young player of the year at New Zealand Football’s annual awards.

The Ipswich Town defender beat off the challenge from Chris Wood, the striker who was on loan at Brighton last season, and Brisbane-based Kosta Barbarouses to win the award.

Smith’s achievements for club and country were recognised after he starred for New Zealand in their unbeaten World Cup campaign in South Africa last year.

He then made 25 starts, scoring three times, for Town before moving to Colchester United on loan in March for the remainder of the season.

Smith said: “I feel very proud to play for New Zealand and representing my country in last summer’s World Cup was the highlight of my career so far. It means a lot to me to receive this award.”

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