It was a night to remember, and here is a collection of photos captured of winners at the 2017 gsport Awards:
A leading pair of MC’s in Andile Ncube and Mpho Maboi created a perfect atmosphere in which to unveil winners.
gsport Founder Kass Naidoo welcomed Awards finalists, dignitaries and and invited guests.
Sport and Recreation South Africa Minister Thulas Nxesi delivers the evening’s keynote speech
Accepting the 2017 Athlete of the Year Award in the champion’s absence was 2010 gsport Hall of Fame recipient, Motlatsi Keikabile, who drew applause for her rendition of Caster Semenya’s signature winners’ salute. The 800m Rio 2016 Olympic champion raced to a PB for gold. Unbeaten for 20+ months, Semenya dominated the IAAF World Leading ranking, running a 1:56.61 SB at the Doha Diamond League on 5 May.
The 2017 Athlete with Disability Awards was won by SA’s no.1 wheelchair tennis player, Kgothatso Montjane, unbeaten by another domestic player for nine years. Ranked 8 in the world and boasting two singles titles alongside five doubles titles in the year under review, Montjane owns her court with the distinction of a battle-hardened elder-stateswoman. In her absence, the Award was received by popular long-distance running icon Mapaseka Makanya.
Also not in attendance on the night due to athletic commitments was the 2017 Emerging Athlete, SA Golf’s Kajal Mistry, the undisputed boss of the SA amateur golf circuit with four victories in 2016, and who ended the season ranked number one boasting a further four major victories in early 2017 to close the year under review. Mistry was represented by her mother Pretiksha, who received the trophy from SASOL’s Charlotte Mokoena.
Momentum Proteas batter Laura Wolvaardt walked off with the School Sports Star Award after a string glittering performances by the Parklands College head-girl. During the year under review, Wolfvaardt became the youngest South African to score an ODI century when she knocked off 149 off 149 balls against Ireland at Potchefstroom, for the second-highest individual score by an SA woman.
Skipper Alexis le Breton was onstage to accept the 2017 Team of the Year Award for Western Province, who enhanced a proud tradition of national dominance, winning two of the three titles on offer including a historic first-ever fourth-consecutive CSA Provincial League champs title, beating Gauteng by 98 runs in Bloemfontein.
The annual Coach of the Year Award was scooped by Suzanne Ferreira (in absentia), a Sports Medicine, Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation Medicine expert and Stellenbosch University lecturer, who was most recently national coach for Team SA to the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games, where athletes under her guidance won a Gold, 3 Silvers and 2 Bronze medals, including a World record and a Paralympic record. Accepting the Award on her behalf is SA Paralympic icon Ilse Hayes.
Grassroots volunteer Mpho Makhoba walked off with the 2017 Woman of the Year Award. Guiding novice enthusiasts into the world of sports officiating, tennis coach Makhoba is the fourth SA woman to receive an international Chief of Umpires qualification, and is the first domestic female official to earn an International Tennis Federation umpire’s qualification.
Having scooped the 2016 gsport Social Media and Radio Awards, formidable Radio Channel Africa sports reporter, producer and radio presenter Rachel Makhura was again honoured for her exceptional work as a consistent and solid supporter of women’s sport, on the international radio service with the 2017 Woman in Radio Award.
An award-winning television presenter, voice-over artist, scriptwriter and producer widely admired for a variety of SABC sports programmes, Lebo Motsoeli earned the 2017 Woman in Television trophy for her work in presenting the SABC’s first sport programme dedicated to woman, Women in Sport, and today she continues this cause on The Ladies Club alongside Vaylen Kirtley.
Daily Sun and Sunday Sun sports journalist Busisiwe Mokwena was onstage to receive the 2017 Woman in Print trophy, after earning her position as a leading source of information about African women’s sport. The Rosebank College graduate’s dedication is clear as she works hard to create trusting relationships with women sports stars, working to ensure improved coverage of their work in national colours.
Woman in Social Media winner Cheryl Roberts has a well-earned reputation for blazing a trail as SA’s self-appointed champion for racial and gender transformation in sport, Cheryl Roberts is the most prolific self-standing publisher of SA women in sport content, and freely shares professional-grade imagery and breaking news about our women athletes across her social media accounts.
Volunteer of the Year Moonira Ramathula rose from a soccer mom to chairperson of the Germiston Local Football Association and founder of Futballing Girls. It is Moonira Ramathula’s mission to encourage girls to play football. A volunteer administrator, coach and a referee, she has guided players to regional and provincial selection while putting others in their first pair of boots.
Mandisa Williams is counted among the pioneers of SA women’s rugby participation in global events, and rose to captain Springbok teams in both Test and 7’s formats. The 2017 Special Recognition Award winner is fondly remembered for her long-past contributions in East London’s Imonti Penguins colours, today the Border Women’s Rugby coordinator builds on Border Rugby’s decade-long dominance of national competitions.
Former SASOL Banyana Banyana captain and double Olympic athlete Amanda Dlamini exudes power and poise as an athlete. Her striking public figure has won her a SA brand ambassadorship with international clothing label Jockey, and her winning qualities are front row for all to appreciate in her new role as a TV sports pundit. She is the 2017 gsport Style Star.
The 2017 gsport Sponsor of the Year Award was won by SASOL, for its instrumental sponsorship of women’s football admired for growing awareness of the game in South Africa, through the developmentally-focused annual football festival in partnership with SAFA; its Sasol League (boasting 2,800 players in 144 teams); and its world-class support of Banyana Banyana. The trophy is received by Charlotte Mokoena for SASOL, from Gauteng Sport MEC Faith Mazibuko.
Cricket South Africa walked off with the 2017 Federation of the Year Award, after achieving a remarkable feat by becoming the first Federation to sign a fully professional senior women’s team, and the results of its investment is paying dividends with the Momentum Proteas matching their best-ever World Cup performance in qualifying for the semi-finals in England. Receiving the Award is Rihan Richards for CSA.
2017 Public Choice Award winner Lauren Duncan’s passion lies in the development and constant upliftment of women’s football in South Africa. She work hard to ensure that people start taking more notice of the talent the country has, and to be able to give young girls opportunities so follow their dreams in becoming professional athletes. Duncan is pictured receiving her trophy from Comrades icon Caroline Wostmann.
Vicky Masuku became the 12th inductee to the gsport Hall of Fame on the night. Multiple award-winning sport anchor Vicky Masuku celebrates 20 years in sport broadcasting this year after the former KwaMashu teacher branched out in 1997 to pursue her no. 1 career ambition. She was soon appointed as in-studio sports anchor for UKhozi FM, where she commentated on soccer, rugby and cricket over the years. Masuku is photographed receiving her trophy from SRSA COO Sumayya Khan.
Ministerial Recognition Awards were accorded to (from left) Prof Cora Burnett, Sports and Exercise Medicine Physician Dr Phathokuhle Zondi, veteran athlete Rosina Sedibane-Modiba, girls sports empowerment volunteer Mavis Sgudhla and Development officer Virginia Mabaso.
2017 gsport Awards winners take in the moment at the conclusion of the night’s broadcast in which 24 champions of women’s sport in SA were recognized for outstanding work driving the movement forward.
All photos copyright (c) gsport 2017