Victoria University student and cross country champion Liam Adams, 24, was named Male Athlete of the Year at the 2010 Australian University Sport Awards held in Adelaide this week.
This is the second time Adams has won the peak award which represents more than one million students at 42 member universities in Australia. He received it the first time in 2008, the same year he was named Victoria University's Male Athlete of the Year. He picked up VU's top male athlete award again in 2010.
"It was definitely a shock and I'm not sure I deserved it this year," said Liam, who is in his final year of a Bachelor of Exercise Science (Human Movement) at the University's Footscray Park Campus. The Moonee Ponds resident has had some sub-standard performances in recent months due to a lingering chest infection.
But Adams hopes to be back to form soon, with a goal to secure a spot on Australia's athletics team heading to the London Olympics next year. As cross-country is not an Olympic sport, he would compete in the 5000 or 10,000-metre event, or perhaps his first marathon if he makes the team.
"In this sport, your peak physical performance improves to a certain point with age and experience," he said.
Last year, Adams, who competes for Athletics Essendon, won silver at the World University cross country championships in Canada, and was the first Australian to cross the finish line in the 12-kilometre open men's world cross country championships in Poland – his best performance to date.
With his busy training and study schedule, Adams has not had much time to decide what to do once he finishes his degree.
"For now, I've just focused on finishing my course. It's been great to apply my studies to what I do as an athlete, but equally, I've been able to use my running for my course work."
In addition to the major award, Adams was one of several university athletes added to the Australian University Sport Honour Roll.
Liam Adams is available for interview on 0401 028 304.
Ann Marie Angebrandt, Media Officer,
Marketing & Communications Department, Victoria University
Ph: (03) 9919 5487; mobile: 0403 556 001.