Obiri confident of emerging top at SOYA Awards


Hellen Obiri wins the Campaccio women's race (PHOTO/IAAF/Giancarlo Colombo)
(FILE)Hellen Obiri wins the Campaccio women's race (PHOTO/IAAF/Giancarlo Colombo)

World 5000m champion Hellen Obiri says a look-back at her previous season gives her enough reason to believe she is in pole position to be crowned Sportswoman of the Year at the 14th Annual Sports Personality of the year awards (SOYA).

The Olympic silver medallist was unstoppable in 2017 and enjoyed landmark success at the IAAF World Championships in London where she bagged her first global title in August before clinching a maiden Diamond League trophy a month later.

Obiri who broke the national record over the 12.5 lap race in Rome in June earned nomination for the IAAF Female Athlete of the Year thanks to her outstanding year although she eventually missed out on the top prize.

“Comparing with the ladies I’m competing against, I have the better chance because I have done very well,” she told Citizen Digital.

Former Harambee Stars striker Mike Okoth will be the chief guest at the gala set to be staged at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) where the country’s biggest sports stars will converge on Wednesday.

Obiri, the reigning Athletics Kenya (AK) Female Athlete of the Year, will battle it out with World 1500m champion Faith Chepngetich Kipyegon and World Marathon silver medallist Ednah Kiplagat.

Others are Snaida Aura of the Kenya women’s sevens team and Edith Wisa of Malkia Strikers and Kenya Prisons.

“I did well in the AK awards in December as I managed to win ahead of both Chepng’etich and Kiplagat. I don’t know the strengths of Aura or Wisa but whatever the outcome I will be happy,” she said.

 

NOMINEES

Sportsman of the Year: 1. Conseslus Kipruto (Athletics), 2.Elijah Manangoi (Athletics), 3. Geoffrey Kirui (Athletics), 4. Darwin Mukidza (Rugby), 5. Eliud Kipchoge (Athletics). Sportswoman of the Year: 1. Hellen Obiri (Athletics), 2. Faith Chepng’etich (Athletics), 3.  Edna Kiplagat (Athletics), 4. Sinaida Aura (Rugby), 5. Edith Wisa (volleyball).

Most Promising player (Boy): 1. Vincent Oburu (Soccer), 2. Abhishek Chidambaran (Cricket), 3 Aman Gandhi (Cricket), 4. Sheil Kotecha (Tennis), 5. Leonard Kipkemoi Bett (Athletics)

Most Promising player (Girl): 1. Jackline Wambui (Athletics), 2. Carren Chebet (Athletics), 3. Mary Moraa (Athletics), 4. Angelah Okutoyi (Tennis), 5. Vennessa Adhiambo (Cricket)

Sportsman Living with a Disability: 1. Samuel Muchai (Paralympics), 2. John Koech (Deaflympics), 3. Lucas Wanjiru (Deaflympics), 4.  Simon Cherono (Deaflympics), 5. Daniel Kiptum (Deaflympics)

Sportswoman Living with a Disability: 1. Nelly Sile (Athletics), 2. Purity Mueni (Volleyball), 3. Beryl Wamira (Deaflympics), 4. Hannah Wakonyo (Deaflympics), 5. Jane Ndenga (Tennis)

Coach of the Year: 1. Curtis Olago (Rugby), 2. Jimmy Kamande (cricket), 3. Kevin Wambua (Rugby), 4. Jos Openda (Hockey), 5.Edward Manoah (Football)

Team of the Year-Men: 1. Gor Mahia (Football), 2. KCB Rugby (Rugby), 3. Kenya U-19 cricket team, 4. Vihiga United (Football), 5. Kenya Police (Hockey)

Team of the Year-Women: 1. Kenya women’s volleyball team, 2. Telkom Orange (Hockey), 3.  Kenya Lionesses (Rugby), 4. National Cricket team (Cricket), 5. Harambee Starlets (Football)

Sports Federation of the Year: 1. Athletics Kenya, 2.  Kenya Secondary Schools Sports Association, 3. Cricket Kenya

Hall of Fame: 1. Allan Thigo (Football), 2. Stephen Muchoki (Boxing)

Schools: School Team of the Year-Boys: 1. Muhuri Muchiri (Rugby 7s), 2. Laiser Hill (Rugby 15s), 3. Kisumu Day (Hockey), 4. Menengai Mixed Day (Rugby 7s), 5. Kakamega High (Football)

School Team of the Year-Girls: 1. Wiyeta Girls (Football), 2.  Kwanthanze  School (Volleyball), 3. Sinyolo Girls (Hockey), 4. Kaya Tiwi (Basketball), 5. Misikhu Girls (Hockey)

School Coach of the Year: 1.Kikechi Kombo (Muhuri Muchiri-Rugby), 2. Justin Kigwari (Kwanthanze -Volleyball), 3.  Edgar Manyara (Wiyeta-Football)

Most outstanding Player of the Year-Boy: 1. Emmanuel Ndonga (Swimming), 2. Petty Andanda (Tennis), 3. Clinton Kioko (Rugby)

Most outstanding Player of the Year -Girl: 1. Faith Nyabera (Lawn Tennis), 2. Gloriah Mulei (Athletics), 3. Hadassah Gichovi (Athletics)

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Story By Dennis Ohuru
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