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‘Buffalo man’ Mwangangi takes home Soya Award

Flamboyant track star Caleb Mwangangi stole the limelight while eight-year-old Chanelle Wangari won hearts at the 12th edition of the Sports Personality of the Year Awards (Soya) on Friday night in Nairobi.

Sportswoman of the Year Eunice Sum displays her trophy.
Sportswoman of the Year Eunice Sum displays her trophy.

Mwangangi was crowned the overall winner of the 2014 Soya Awards as well as the Sportsman of the Year as a reward for an imperious performance in a year that he won everything there was to win.

“Thank you, thank you, and thank you once again for bestowing this honour on me. Last year was a remarkable one in my career but there is still more to come because the footprints are still wet,” said Mwangangi.

“This is the real man now, the real Buffalo,” added the beaming 2014 Diamond League Series winner who also won the World Indoor 3,000m and the 5,000m gold at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland.

Mwangangi would then go for the Africa 5,000m title in Marrakech, Morocco in August before winning the World Cup 3,000m gold at the same venue and month.

BIG WINNERS

Chanelle Wangari displays the Most Promising Girls trophy during the 2014 Soya Awards. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO
Chanelle Wangari displays the Most Promising Girls trophy during the 2014 Soya Awards. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO

But while Mwangangi was the show stopping act at the well-attended ceremony, it is the young Wangari who drew a rapturous standing ovation from the packed ballroom at Kenyatta International Convention Center (KICC) after being voted the Most Promising Girl.

The up and coming golfer, who still does not have a handicap, was on the news for the better part of last year for her exploits on the golf course both locally and internationally.

Wangari even hard a little piece of advice to senior golfers.

“When teeing off you should not smash the ball, just use your skills”, she said to wild applause from the audience.

The other big winners of the night were 800m World Champion and Commonwealth champion Eunice Sum (Sportswoman of the Year), Dennis Kimetto (Outstanding Performance of the Year) and national women’s team tactician Jose Openda who was voted the Coach of the Year.

World and Olympic marathon champion Ugandan Stephen Kiprotich was the international celebrity guest at the event.

 

Winners:

Overall Sports Personality of the Year Winner: Caleb Mwangangi

Sports Personality of the Year (Male) Award: Caleb Mwangangi (athletics)

Sports Personality of the Year (Female): Eunice Sum (athletics)

Outstanding Performance of the Year: Dennis Kimetto (athletics)

Coach of the Year: Jose Openda (hockey)

Comeback award: Innocent Simiyu (rugby)

Sports Federation of the Year: Kenya Volleyball Federation

Most Promising Girl: Chanelle Wangari (golf)

Most Promising Boy: Ronald Kwemoi (athletics)

Best sportswoman with disability: Joyce Wambui

Best Sportsman with disability: Nikhil Sachania (motorsport)

School team of the Year (girls): Shimba Hills Girls

School team of the Year (boys): Friends School Kamusinga

Sports team of the year (men): KCB (rugby)

Sports team of the year (women): Orange Telkom (hockey)

Community Hero: Samuel Kimiti (baseball)

Hall of Fame Inductee: Jasmet Singh (cricket)