18 November 2013
Kaizer Chiefs and Bafana Bafana goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune picked up the Sports Star of the Year award at the South African Sports Awards at Sun City in North West province on Sunday evening.
He won R1-million, half of which will go to his charity of choice, which turned out to be his former primary school, and a new BMW 1 Series.
Khune was up against double world champion swimmer Chad le Clos, US Open wheelchair tennis champion Lucas Sithole, world leading batsman Hashim Amla and versatile athletics star Mapaseka Makhanya for the award.
While Khune enjoyed a superb year, some critics argued that opening the voting for the main award to the public had made it a popularity vote that the footballer was always likely to win.
Sportsman of the Year Award
The Bafana Bafana captain failed to land the Sportsman of the Year award. That went to Olympic champion Cameron van der Burgh, who won the 50 metres breaststroke at the Fina World Championships in Barcelona. Amla was the third nominee.
Makhanya, who excelled over distances from 800 metres to the marathon, lifted the Sportswoman of the Year award, with Lee-Ann Pace, a two-time winner on the Ladies European Tour, and Springbok women’s rugby captain Mandisa Williams, who led her side to Women’s Rugby World Cup qualification, missing out. During the year, Makhyana won the Gauteng Marathon and the Spar Women’s Challenge overall title.
Sportsman of the year with Disability
World number two Sithole, who also won the British Open in July, was recognised when he received the Sportsman of the Year with Disability award. His coach, Helger Losch, was named Coach of the Year.
Fellow wheelchair tennis star Kgothatso Montjane, ranked sixth in the world and also coached by Losch, claimed the Sportswoman of the Year with Disability award. The highlight of her year was her victory in the Gauteng Open, in which she defeated top Dutch player Jiske Griffioen for the first time to claim the trophy.
There was further recognition for South Africa’s wheelchair tennis players when Thato Tsomole received recognition as the Newcomer of the Year.
Team of the Year
The Proteas, the dominant team in test cricket, were named Team of the Year. They whitewashed New Zealand and Pakistan on home soil and also shared a draw with Pakistan in the UAE.
The Proteas’ dominance can be seen in the test player rankings, with AB de Villiers and Hashim Amla number one and two among batsmen, while Graeme Smith is in eighth place. Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander top the bowling rankings, while Morne Morkel occupies 13th place.
Swimming South Africa piggy-backed on the success of Chad le Clos and Cameron van der Burgh to receive the Federation of the Year title.
Mimi Mthethwa was named the Administrator of the Year for her excellent work in netball.
OTHER AWARD WINNERS
Volunteer Of The Year: Zakes Mkhize
Indigenous Games Of The Year: Simphiwe Maphumulo
Photographer Of The Year: Wessel Oosthuizen
Journalist Of The Year: Ramatsiyi Moholoa
School Team Of The Year: Sol Plaatjie Sol Plaatje High School
Developing School Team of The Year: Daniye Primary School
Recreational Bodies: 702 Walk The Talk
Steve Tshwete Lifetime Achievement Award: Hajera Kajee, Mvuzo Mbebe, Kaizer Motaung, Leepile Taunyane and Betty Magwaza