2016 gsport Awards Judges Unveiled

Former SPAR Proteas netball captain Zanele Mdodana has joined the elite Judging Panel for the 2016 gsport Awards in August.

Mdodana teams up with legendary former SA hockey striker Pietie Coetzee, sports activist Cheryl Roberts and entrepreneur Uyanda Mbuli in a dynamic four-woman panel that will drive the process to unveil this year’s winners.

The gsport Awards Judges will provide expert support in two of the most critical elements of the annual gsport Awards – determining the finalists in each Awards category, and casting their votes along with the general public in the Awards’ penultimate phase.

This year, the public vote will be counted as the deciding fifth ‘Public’ Judge vote, which will complete the votes cast by the gsport Judges.

2015 saw a major departure from earlier gsport Awards procedures with a required signup prior to voting at the gsport website. This measure was introduced to blunt the impact of unlimited voting by some contestants who enjoyed unrestricted Internet access.

Who are the Judges?

Former SA Netball captain and Laureus Ambassador Zanele Mdodana has experienced all aspects of sporting life in South Africa, and after retiring at the top of her game, has quickly established herself as a top-notch Sports Manager at the Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth.

A leading hockey coach and former SA women’s hockey striker known for her world record of 287 goals in 289 caps for South Africa, Pietie Coetzee has represented her country at the 2000, 2004 and 2012 Olympics. Her students may not be surprised to learn that Coetzee quickly made her mark as the toughest judge on the 2015 gsport Judges’ panel, and we look forward to her no-nonsense approach in considering all nominations again.

Sports activist Cheryl Roberts was drawn to supporting women’s sport due to apartheid prejudices, and discrimination of race and gender in sport. She is foremost a publisher and writer as an ardent supporter of transformation in sport, and self-publishes a monthly magazine highlighting the status of SA sport, with a focus on women in sport.

Long distinguished by her powerful profile as a leading figure in business and fashion, 2009 gsport Style Star winner Uyanda Mbuli is well-known as an Award-winning style icon. Mbuli has helped shape the Style Star category and has a keen eye for unearthing style stars.

What do the Judges Do?

After the close of Nominations, the Judges will receive Info Packs in each Awards category on 23 July, and begin the arduous task of considering the motivations contained in the Info Packs to decide what value to assign each Nominee’s entry.

The Judges will have a week to consider the Info Packs before making their mark in a dedicated face-to-face Judging Session. gsport will allow the Judges every opportunity to consider public information about the Nominees in addition to what is contained in the Info Packs, and to debate the merits of candidates between themselves.

Then the Judges will set down their confidential scores. The process of scoring and the compilation of scores will be audited to ensure a fair process for the Finalists.

How does Voting Work?

The 2016 gsport Voting Hall will open at the gsport.co.za website after the Judges have decided on the Finalists in each Awards category, at which stage visitors will be able to login using their existing membership details, or have the option of creating a new account, to allow them to vote.

Once voting closes, the Judges’ votes will be added to the fifth ‘Public Judge’s vote to deliver a winner in each Awards category. The Judges will have finished their work at this stage, and they will only be notified of an extraordinary recall to break a tie in votes between Finalists at the close of public voting.

Complete voting rules – including the details of tie-breaking procedures and incentives which allow visitors to earn additional votes for their favourite candidates – will be announced ahead of the opening of public voting.


Key Provisional Dates:
Public Nominations: 8 June – 15 July
Judging: 23 July-31 July
Announcement of Finalists: 1 August
Public Voting: 1-21 August


The 2016 gsport Awards Judges:
Pietie Coetzee
Uyanda Mbuli
Zanele Mdodana
Cheryl Roberts


Photo 1 caption: Zanele Mdodana has been unveiled as the new member of the elite Judging Panel for the 2016 gsport Awards. In this file photo, the Estee Lauder’s Lulu Mthimkhulu hands Mdodana (right) the first gsport Style Star award to an athlete at the 2014 gsport Awards. Photo: gsport
Photo 2 caption: Sports activist Cheryl Roberts (right) congratulates Natalie le Clue, winner of the 2015 gsport Woman in Media Award (Print) Award. Photo: gsport
Photo 3 caption: Entrepreneur Uyanda Mbuli (left) congratulates 2015 gsport Woman in Media – Social Media winner Reabetswe Mashigo. Photo: gsport
Photo 4 caption: Hockey legend Pietie Coetzee congratulates Mampho Tsotetsi, the 2015 gsport Coach of the Year award winner. Photo: gsport


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Launched in 2006, gsport exists to enhance the commercial prospects of our women athletes, and other women in sport, by telling the inspiring story of SA women in sport. Thank you for your contribution!

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