Wed, 11 Dec 2019

Cape Town - 2019 Comrades Marathon winner, Gerda Steyn, who smashed the women's up run record, will battle it out with 2018 winner and 800m world champion, Caster Semenya, unbeaten over this distance since 2015, and CAF African Women's Footballer of the Year, Thembi Kgatlana, in the strongest shortlist for gsport Athlete of the Year since the Awards inception.

The trio lead a formidable list of 54 finalists for the 14th edition of South Africa's longest running women's sport recognition platform and Africa's only national women's sport Awards, having been endorsed by Sport and Recreation South Africa in 2015.

Public help choose the winners through free voting which kicks off in the gsport Voting Hall at gsport.co.za/voting at 06:00 on Friday, 19 July. Voting will close at 18:00 on National Women's Day on Friday, August 9.

Kgatlana, who scored Banyana Banyana's opening goal in their first-ever FIFA World Cup appearance, is a double finalist and also features in another strong category where she faces off with Saray Khumalo, the first black African woman to summit Mount Everest, and President of Netball South Africa, Cecilia Molokwane, who led the charge to bring the 2023 Netball World Cup to SA.

Banyana Banyana coach, Desiree Ellis, the first coach to qualify the national women's team for the FIFA Women's World Cup features alongside CSA National Academy women's assistant coach, Dinesha Devnarain and leading athletics coach, Maritza Coetzee in the Coach of the Year category.

Banyana Banyana lead the finalists in the Team of the Year category along with Springbok Women's Sevens and Wheelchair Women's Tennis.

Emerging Athlete of the Year is contested by amazing rising talent in current World Under-20 400m hurdles champion, Zeney van der Walt, African Junior 100m and 400m hurdles champion, Rogail Joseph and South African Junior number two and third-ranked senior golfer, Kaiyuree Moodley.

Moodley is also a finalist in the School Sports Star category along with Gauteng North's top rated U16 squash player, Awande Malinga and SA's leading U8 chess player, Minentle Miya.

A new name has emerged in the Athlete with Disability category where three-time IWAS medallist, Sheryl Denise James will take on 2020 Tokyo Olympic qualifier, Louzanne Coetzee, and multiple gsport Award winner, KG Montjane.

Women in media continue to make great strides with industry peers going head to head in all five media categories.

SABC Sport TV anchor and Radio 2000 presenter, Romy Titus, is a double finalist. She battles it out with ENCA sports reporter, Hloni Mtimkulu and fellow SABC Sport TV anchor, Xoli Zondo, in the television category.

Titus will take on VisionView presenter, Lerato Phago, and North West FM sports anchor, Karabo Mokgalagadi, in the radio category.

The print category sees long-time freelance writers Jane Bramley and Karien Jonckheere battle it out alongside Sowetan Live reporter, Linda Moreotsene.

2018 winner, and PR sports guru, Lali Stander, is back to defend her crown in the Woman in PR and Sponsorship category against 2018 finalist, and Varsity Sport PR Manager, Marisa Calvert, and M-Sports Marketing PR hot shot Keabetswe Taele.

The Woman in Social Media category sees University Sport South Africa (USSA) social media co-ordinator pitted against rising sports journalist, Sinethemba Mbatha and social media influencer, Lee-Ann Mpofu.

Netball South Africa, the South African Rugby Union and University Sport South Africa are the three finalists in the Federation of the Year category for their work to raise the profile of women in sport.

Volunteer of the Year is contested by committed community sports coach, Maria Diamond, leading touch rugby co-ordinator, Nadeema Levy, and long-time women's sport volunteer, Zizo Papu.

In the Supporter of the Year category, 2018 winner and Proteas Women number one supporter Shannon Landman-Kriel takes on women's cricket administrator and scorer, Selina Munsamy, and sport for the disabled volunteer, Anet Bosman.

The Special Recognition category sees Captain of the North West Dragons cricket team, part-time coach, and member of the Proteas Women's cricket squad, Tazmin Britz, first degree black belt in Combat Tang Soo Do, Tanita Ramburuth-Hurt and South African Transplant Games veteran, Heilie Uys, go for top honours.

Finalists for Sponsor of the Year, which lauds sponsors that put women's sport first, are Nike (athletics), Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles (surfing) and Wiphold (tennis).

The Style Category which positions women in sport who exude style and elegance sees SuperSport colleagues Lindiwe Dube and Andee Mahamba face off against SABC TV News and SAFM anchor, Xoli Zondo, who is also a finalist in the television category.

The Public Choice Award seeks to reward a Finalist who captured the public imagination and wins the largest public vote across all categories, without winning an Award.

Voting is open until 6pm on 9 August to decide the Public Vote, which acts as the sixth judge in the process. The public vote is combined with the votes of the five-member gsport judging panel, to decide the overall winners. Votes can be cast at gsport.co.za/voting.

Winners will be announced at the 2019 gsport Awards on August 31, 2019, in Johannesburg.

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