Zorko edges Beams in Lions champion showdown
MEDAL collector Dayne Zorko has continued his remarkable ascent into Lions folklore becoming the second man to win four consecutive Club Champion awards, after claiming the Merrett-Murray Medal in Brisbane on Friday night.
The prodigious trophy hunter will enter next season with club great Kevin Murray's record of five straight from 1960-64 in his sights.
The count was the closest on record with Zorko winning by a vote over former skipper Dayne Beams.
The 29-year-old's recognition saw him move to outright seventh on the all-time Club Champion list behind Murray (nine), John Murphy (five), Paul Roos (five), Allan Ruthven (five), Garry Wilson (five) and Michael Voss (five).
He surpassed three-time winners Simon Black, Jonathan Brown, Norm Brown and Len Wigraft.
Beams got the votes from his teammates and the fans, winning the Players' Player and Fans MVP award.
Murray was there to present Zorko with his Club Champion medal in person, alongside Roger Merrett and Lions chairman Andrew Wellington.
Zorko polled 250 votes, while Beams finished second with 249.
Ruckman Stefan Martin closely followed in third place with 242 votes while defenders Darcy Gardiner and Harris Andrews rounded out the top five.
Andrews also won the Marcus Ashcroft Most Professional Player Award for the second year and was presented with the award by the triple-premiership star.
Gardiner also picked up a gong for the Shaun Hart Trademark Player of the Year. He previously won this award in 2016 when it was known as "Most Competitive Player".
Alex Witherden was awarded Rookie of the Year in his second season at the Gabba.
Earlier in the week, the defender attended the Rising Star Luncheon in Melbourne after receiving his second nomination for that award.
Premiership player Robert Copeland and Beau McDonald, along with current Lion Daniel Rich, were inducted as life members.
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