… voted Sports Achiever of the Year
WINDHOEK – As widely expected, Namibia’s golden girl Johanna Benson was overwhelmingly the biggest winner at Friday’s MTC Namibia Sports Commission (NSC) annual sports awards at the Windhoek Country Club.
The Paralympic double medal winner scooped both the Disabled Sportswoman of the Year award and N$15 000 and the more prestigious Sports Achiever of the Year award, which carries a prize of N$20 000, to take home a combined N$35 000 in prize monies.
The soft-spoken sprinter brought tears of joy to many when she stepped on the stage to receive her awards following her astonishing achievements during the 2012 London Paralympics, where she stunned the world by winning Namibia’s first ever Paralympics gold and silver medals.
Namibia’s undisputed World Boxing Organization (WBO) bantamweight champion Paulus ‘The Rock’ Ambunda, who is arguably Africa’s best bantamweight boxer by a mile, walked away with the Sportsman of the Year award (N$15 000).
Ambunda, who’s impressive record of 19 wins from the same number of bouts speaks volumes, is in line to challenge Thailand’s incumbent champion Punglaung Sor Singyu for the bantamweight world title, on a yet to be announced date.
Long-distance runner, Helalia Johannes, was the proud recipient of the Sportswoman of the Year award including a N$15 000 cheque.
Johannes, who finished 12th in the women’s marathon race at the 2012 London Olympics, took the international sporting arena by surprise when she won the gruelling Dublin Marathon and also finished 3rd at the Vienna Marathon in an impressive time of 02:27:20-seconds.
Young tennis sensation, Tuki Jacobs, came out tops in the Junior Sportsman of the Year category, following his unmatched exploits on the tennis court. The youngster took home N$10 000 for his achievements, while waterskier Natascha Rottcher was deservingly rewarded in the female category.
Meanwhile, athlete Ananias Shikongo walked away with the Disabled Sportsman of the Year award – the visually impaired sprinter also pocketed a handsome N$15 000 in the process.
Sprinter Glogine Mayova’s efforts finally paid off when she was awarded Most Improved Sportsperson of the year.
Following allegations of racism within their structures, Cricket Namibia’s senior team won the category Team of the Year award at the expense of the U-19 Rugby team, while the Namibian Golf Foundation (NGF) was rewarded for the best Sports Development Programme of the Year. The Administrator of the Year award went to football administrator Jacky Gertze.
Michael Hamukwaya was the deserving winner in the category Coach of the Year. He was recognised for his hard work during the Paralympic Games, where he was instrumental in the success of Johanna Benson and Ananias Shikongo among other athletes.
Herman Garus-Oab walked away with the Referee of the Year award.