Waterpolo one of the stars at the 2016 Gauteng Sports Awards
The pride of Wits at this year’s awards lie with the nominations of FNB Wits Rugby Club 1st Team in the category of Sports Team of the Year; Kelsey White in the Coach of the Year category and finally with Emma Hardham as one of three nominees for the Most Promising Player of the Year accolade.
The annual Gauteng Sports Awards are set to take place on October 2 in a glittering event that honours Gauteng’s most promising sports stars. The gala awards dinner will be hosted by Mogale City at the Silverstar Casino in Krugersdorp with the 2016 awards considering sporting performances relating only to achievements during the period 1 July 2015 to 30 June 2016.
The Wits Rugby 1st Team earned the nod as a result of a stupendous run in the 2016 FNB Varsity Shield where they were eventual winners, beating University of Western Cape 39 – 2 in the final. They contend the award alongside the Xerox Golden Lions who had a stellar run toward lifting the Currie Cup in 2015 as well the duo of Kirsten McCann and Ursula Grobler who represented South Africa at the Rio Olympics in the Women's Lightweight Double Sculls, finishing fifth in the final.
Emma Hardham – who’s had a mercurial rise in the water polo arena with previous representation for the senior national women’s team and boasts a EU 8 Nationals World Water Polo Championship medal amongst others – has earned her place in the category of Most Promising Player of the Year in the mean company of Gareth Bremmer: Ice Hockey – Various Events; Siphamandle Hadebe: Volleyball and Nokwande Hlongwane: Wheelchair Tennis.
The third of the nominees from Wits is water polo coach Kelsey White who boasts an illustrious pedigree in the discipline. She is a member of the National SA Women’s Water Polo Team; Captain of the SA Women’s Water Polo Team; EU Nations Cup Winner 2015 & 2016; Commonwealth Bronze medallist and has been part of three FINA World Championship winning teams. She has coached teams in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Australia and is part of the Old Mutual Development Swimming Programme to add to a long list of professional milestones.
With less than a month to go before the winners are announced at GSA 2016, the University will be crossing its fingers in hopes that the prized awards find their way back to the university’s famed honours roll and add to the institutions’ already rich sporting heritage.