Tennis South Africa (TSA) President, Gavin Crookes has applauded Wheelchair Tennis South Africa (WTSA) on the multiple nominations the Federation received for this year’s SPAR Gsport Awards.
Wheelchair Tennis South Africa (WTSA) received the biggest recognition at the Gsport Awards nominees announcement with a representative in the most of the awards category unveiled at Melrose Arch on Monday morning.
The Federation have made the shortlist of finalists in four categories with World number two junior Nokwanda Hlongwane nominated in two categories, the country’s leading women’s player Kgothatso Montjane for the Athlete of the Year with Disability and General Manager Karen Losch for the Women of the year award.
“I must say that the achievements of WTSA on and off the court over the years have made Tennis South Africa and tennis as a sport proud” said Crookes. “For a young Federation like WTSA to have achieved so much is quite remarkable and TSA recognize their efforts and the partnership with Airports Company South Africa that have made so much of the success possible” continued Crookes.
Crookes also said that Kass Naidoo the Gsport4Girls founder needed to be recognized for her initiative in creating the Gsport Awards and recognizing the role women play in sport.
Wheelchair tennis rising star Nokwanda Hlongwane was hugely honored and could claim awards in two categories this year. The 17-year-old was nominated alongside South African sprinter Tamzin Thomas and South African cricketer Sune Luus for the Junior Athlete of the Year. Hlongwane is also one of the three nominees for the School Sports Star of the Year category, where she’s up against distance runner Simonay Weitsz and South African women’s cricketer Laura Wolvaardt.
Nokwanda has described her nomination as a great honour, “It is a great honor to be recognized by the Gsport awards team and this is a motivation for me to keep making waves and getting to the top,” said Hlongwane.
Former Gsport award winner Kgothatso Montjane has been named one of the three finalists for Athlete of the year with disability. The 30-year-old will be up against Paralympic handcyclist Justine Asher and Louzanne Coetzee.
The Limpopo-born star is currently ranked number 9 in the world in the wheelchair tennis women’s division and became the first African woman to participate in a Grand Slam.
The Paralympian recently clinched the Belgian Open doubles title with Angelica Bernal from Colombia outplaying top seeds Sabine Ellerbrock from Germany and Pauline Helouin of France to record her second title in Jambes.
WTSA’s General Manager Karen Losch was one of the women to complete the nomination list. Losch was nominated for the prestigious Women of the Year award alongside Faith Sibeko and Dumisani Chauke to complete Wheelchair Tennis South Africa’s magnificent representation at the 10th SPAR Gsport awards.