MONTJANE CROWNED GAUTENG SPORTS PERSONALITY OF THE YEAR!
South African world number 6 wheelchair tennis ace Kgothatso Montjane was the big winner on Sunday night at the 8th Annual Gauteng Sports Awards held at Silverstar Casino in Mogale City, where she was crowned the Sports Personality of the Year.
The 32-year-old Montjane beat the likes of South African international cricketer Kagiso Rabada, mountain bike champion William Mokgopo and Banyana Banyana midfielder Refiloe Jane to claim the accolade which is voted for by sports fans in South Africa.
This recognition follows Montjane’s great run at Wimbledon – reaching the singles semi-final round and becoming the first South African black woman to play in the grass court tournament in London.
Montjane who is currently in St. Louis, USA for the US Open Super Series tournament which ended on Sunday could barely contain her emotions after she heard the news.
"Winning this award is everything and obviously it could not have been possible without the help of so many people. I have so many people to thank. Thank you South Africa, for the support!
"Without my coach Gerald Stoffberg, WTSA and all my sponsors I wouldn't have reached where I am today. I think of my family during these moments, it’s through their love and support that I live my dream today."
“Thank you to the Gauteng Department of Sport, Arts, Culture and recreation for the recognition. This is a great motivation for me going into the US Open this week,” added Montjane.
The Limpopo-born star will be travelling to New York today (Monday) for her fourth US Open Grand Slam tournament which will be staged at the USTA National Tennis Center in Flushing Meadow from 6-9 September.
Montjane becomes the first wheelchair tennis player from Africa to play in all four Grand Slams in a year.
Rising star Alwande Sikhosana, who turned 18 years last week Thursday, was named School Sports Athlete of the Year. Sikhosana who is currently doing Grade 12 at Adelaide Tambo Special School in Soweto said he was overwhelmed to receive his first Gauteng Sports Award.
“I am grateful for being given a chance to prove to the world that we as people living with disabilities have the ability in us. I am extremely happy and blessed receiving this award tonight because to me it is a sign of hard work, persistence and discipline recognized in me,” commented Sikhosana.