Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Sports Reporter
FINALISTS for the fourth edition of the African Union Sports Council Region 5 Regional Annual Sports Awards have been released with Zimbabwean athletes appearing in seven of the 10 categories.
This year’s awards will be hosted in Windhoek, Namibia, on Africa Day, according to AUSC Region 5 chief executive officer Stanley Mutoya.
“African Union Sports Council (AUSC), Region 5 will be hosting the fourth edition of the Regional Annual Sport Awards (Rasa) to be held in Windhoek, Namibia, on the 25 May 2019. The awards celebrate and recognise sports luminaries in 10 AUSC Region 5 member countries, Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
“All member countries’ National Sports Awards winners are automatically nominees for the regional awards. Currently only nine of the 10-member countries host National Sports Awards, namely Angola, Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi Namibia, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe,” wrote Mutoya in a communiqué to voting panellists.
Zimbabwe’s reigning Junior Sportsperson of the Year and squash sensation Ryan Gwidzima is in contention for the regional award where he squares up against Zambia’s Kennedy Luchembe and Blessing Kamanga from Malawi.
Reigning Zimbabwe Sportsperson of the Year Wilfred Mashaya has South African Caster Semenya and Anisha Bashel of Malawi to contend with in the regional sportsperson of the year award.
Coach of the Year
Gilbert Nyamutsamba (Sevens rugby, Zimbabwe), Samuel Sepeng (Athletics, South Africa), Christina Makwanda-Msinji (Netball Under-20, Malawi)
Junior Female Sportsperson of the Year
Moneyi Chingaipe (Athletics, Malawi), Lorryn Ashley Bass (Rowing, Zimbabwe), Manqabeng Tsibela (Athletics, Lesotho)
Junior Male Sportsperson of the Year
Kennedy Luchembe (Athletics, Zambia), Blessings Kamanga (Chess, Malawi), Ryan Gwidzima (Squash, Zimbabwe)
Sports Team of the Year
Athletics National Team (Athletics, Botswana), Banyana Banyana (Football, South Africa), Netball (Netball, Malawi)
Sportsman of the Year
Isaac Makwala (Athletics, Botswana), Wilfred Mashaya (Martial Arts, Zimbabwe), Chad le Clos (Swimming, South Africa)
Sportswoman of the Year with a disability
Margaret Bangajena (Wheelchair athletics, Zimbabwe), Monica Munga (Athletics, Zambia), Anrune Liebenberg (Athletics T47, South Africa)
Sportsman of the Year with a disability
Ndodanzi Jonathan Ntuthu (Athletics T12, South Africa), Celestino Elias Antonio (Football, Angola), Ananias Shikongo (Athletics T11, Namibia)
Sportsperson of the Year
Wilfred Mashaya (Martial Arts, Zimbabwe), Anisha Bashel, (Boxing, Malawi), Caster Semenya (Athletics, South Africa)
Journalist of the Year
Tinashe Tirivavi (The Mirror, Zimbabwe), Motshidisi Mohono, (South Africa), Limba Mupetami (Namibian Sun, Namibia)