Gaborone — Botswana Athletics Association (BAA) cracked the whip on other sporting codes at the 42nd Botswana Sport Awards on Saturday as it scooped more than half of the awards on offer.
Sprint sensation, Letsile Tebogo was the most notable winner as he walked away with three awards being Junior Sports Person of the Year, Sports Person of the Year and the Minister’s Award.
In a side interview after the awards, BAA president, Moses Bantsi said he was not surprised that they amassed as much awards, looking at their on-field performance the past year.
“Even the nation is our witness that we deserved as much. We have been improving year after year both at the association and individual level and we are very humbled and excited with our achievements” he said.
Bantsi said he was confident that even next year, athletics would continue to shine looking at the current performance of athletes on the international stage.
“The good part is that most of them are still young, so the future is bright,” he said.
Bantsi also attributed the consistency of athletics on volunteerism, saying that coaches, administrators and all others used their own resources such as vehicles and money to run the code.
“For such, we greatly commend and appreciate them,” he said.
He also hailed, Debswana, whose sponsorship he said enabled them to participate in many competitions to sharpen up athletes.
He however, lamented the long defunct school sport, which he said had greatly hindered athletics progress.
Apart from the three awards scooped by Tebogo, athletics also walked away with Sports Administrator of the Year in Paphane Bothale, Sports Association of the Year, Junior Sportswoman of the Year in Obakeng Kamberuka, Sportsperson with Disability for both men and women categories which went to Theo Nkele and Neo Gabontshwe respectively.
Sportsman of the Year was scooped by 400m runner, Bayapo Ndori, National Sports Team of the Year went to the men’s 4x400m relay team while Kebonyemodisa Mosimanyane scooped Coach of the Year.
Lethabo Modukanele emerged best Sportswoman of the Year while the public favoured Bafitlhelanye Matlhare of volleyball as Public Athlete of the Year.
In other awards, Non-citizen of the Year went to Sensei William Ndoumbe of judo. Dorothy Okatch of basketball was chosen Best Referee.
Apart from Tebogo, the Minister’s Award also went posthumously to the trio of Keitumetse Paul and Major David Bright of football as well as Ibrahim Bhamjee of cricket.
Best Electronic Journalist was scooped by Solomon Kakuwa while Calistus Kolantsho of Mmegi took Best Print Journalist. Best Photographer went to Phenyo Moalosi of DailyNews, Best Electronic Media house went to BTV and Mmegi was chosen Best Print media house.