5 November 2012
Swimming star Chad le Clos was crowned the Sport Star of the Year at the South African Sports Awards in Johannesburg on Sunday evening. Last year, he was named Newcomer of the Year.
The 20-year-old, who beat Michael Phelps in the American’s favourite event, the 200m butterfly, to win Olympic gold in London, claimed the honour ahead of fellow finalists Hashim Amla, Vernon Philander, Caster Semenya, Natalie du Toit, Oscar Pistorius, and Siyabonga Nomvethe.
Le Clos won a further medal at the Olympic when he finished second to Phelps in the final of the 100m butterfly.
His reward for being named Sports Star of the Year was R1-million and a new BMW.
Sportsman of the Year
Philander, after a sensational start to his test career, in which he became the second fastest player to 50 wickets ever, won the Sportsman of the Year trophy.
The Sportswoman of the year award went the way of Caster Semenya, who won a silver medal in the 800 metres at the London Olympic Games.
The Team of the Year went to the Olympic gold medal winning men’s coxless lightweight fours combination of Sizwe Ndlovu, Matthew Brittain, John Smith and James Thompson for their stirring victory at Eton Dornay.
Brittain told the media afterwards: “Team of the Year, I feel like we really do deserve this award. We are a great team and I feel really lucky to be rowing with the guys that are around me, and the great coaching and the great support that we’ve had.”
World Rowing Male Crew of the Year
The four men were also recognised in the World Rowing Awards on Saturday when they were named the World Rowing Male Crew of the Year. Their win at the Olympics was the first rowing gold for Africa in the history of the Games.
Rowing won two further awards as Rowing South Africa president Wimpie du Plessis was named Administrator of the Year and the sport was named Federation of the Year.
The Coach of the Year award went to Joseph Mkhonza, who led Banyana Banyana to a place at the Olympics for the first time ever. Places at the Games were open to only two African teams.
Sportswoman of the year with Disability
Paralympic great Natalie du Toit, who retired after the London Paralympics, where she was South Africa’s leading medal winner, was named Sportswoman of the year with Disability. During her Paralympic career, spanning three Games, she won 13 gold medals and two silver medals.
Oscar Pistorius, who competed at both the Paralympic and Olympics, where he made the semi-finals of the 400 metres, was named Sportsman of the Year with Disability.
The Newcomer of the Year Award went to Western Province and Stormers’ flanker Siya Kolisi.
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