Four of South Africa’s athletes are nominated for world awards in their respective fields, and one of them has already made it to the final round.
Track and field sensations Caster Semenya, Luvo Manyonga and Wayde van Niekerk, and football star Oscarine Masuluke are in the running to win awards from their governing bodies.
Semenya is the only South African nominated for the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) women’s athlete of the year award. In 2017 Semenya was undefeated in the 800m, claimed a third world title, was crowned IAAF Diamond League champion and ran the fastest 800m in nine years. She also claimed a world bronze medal for the 1500m.
Long jumper Manyonga was undeafted in nine competitions this year and became the world champion in London. He also claimed the Diamond League crown in Zurich to cap a sterling year. His distance of 8.65m in Potchefstroom was the best of the last eight years.
Another South African Olympic champion, Van Niekerk had a steller year setting a new world record in the 300m, becoming world champion in the 400m and claiming a silver medal in the 200m.
The Baroka goalkeeper is now among three finalists for Fifa’s Puskás goal of the year award. Masuluke scored a stunning stoppage-time bicycle kick equaliser against Orlando Pirates during the 2016/2017 Absa Premiership. Masuluke is up against Arsenal striker Oliver Giroud’s backheel goal and Venezuela Deyna Castellanos’s stoppage-time halfway line goal.
How to vote:
For Oscar Masuluke, click here to vote. This link will take you to his voting page where you will see a blue bar with the word “Vote”. Click that and you are done.
Voting closes on Monday October 23 with all the votes from the first and second rounds tallied up to decide the winner.
The IAAF awards
The athletics awards have a three-way voting process that will determine the winner. The IAAF council and family will vote via email, while the public must vote via social media platforms. The council members’ votes will count 50% towards the final tally, while the family and public votes will each count 25%.
A retweet and a like will count as one vote.
Voting closes Monday October 16 at 1pm
On Facebook, find Semenya, Manyonga and Van Niekerk's picture then like the pick and share it to your followers so they too can vote!
On Twitter, all you have to do is retweet.
We have embedded the Facebook and Twitter posts below so you don’t have to go searching for them.
At the time of publishing high jumper Mutaz Essa Barshim of Bahrain led the “likes” count with 2 600. Van Niekerk was on 1 000 and Manyonga trailing on 600.
Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia has opened a commanding lead with a whopping 16 000 “likes”, while Semenya has only racked up 2 100.
On Twitter, Barshim has amassed 67 000 retweets, while Van Niekerk sits on 1 800 and Manyonga on 734. Semenya has 3 200 retweets, 400 shy of long distance athlete Hellen Obiri.
Come on Mzansi, let’s show our athletes some love!