Olympic athlete, Sibusiso Nzima, deservedly received the 2016 Athlete of the Year award at a function where the Nedbank Soweto Development Club honoured its athletes' performances.
Nzima also got the nod as the club's Road Running Athlete of the Year.
It was no surprise that Lisa Kellerman received the Track and Field Athlete of the Year award. In fact, those in the know predict that she has the ability to become one of South Africa's top female 800 m athletes. A quick glance at her performances at the Senior and Junior National Championships prove it. At the South African Junior and Youth Championships in Germiston she won the under-18 girls 800 m race.
It was at the Senior Championships in Stellenbosch where Kellerman really proved that she was not going to be intimidated, as she ran against older and more experienced athletes. She finished second in the 800-m final with a personal best time of 2:05.75. The legendary Caster Semenya was the only athlete to beat her.
Lucky Mtshali, the SA 8 km Cross Country Champion, was also honoured.
The Nedbank Soweto Development Club athletes did well in road-racing and on the track over the weekend.
Simon Mpholo raced to a second-place finish in the KFC Valentine 10 km in Randburg, running a time of 32:52. Scelo Mashaba finished second in the men's junior race with a time of 37:22.
Andronica Mokgotla secured a second-place finish in the women's race by running a time of 39:51.
The club's athletes gave the spectators something to get excited about with the way they duelled it out in the 10 000 m during a track and field meeting at the University of Johannesburg. Siyaya Khoza (Club Manager) described the race as a real thriller, with five of his athletes taking the lead at various stages during the race.
'They had just reason to race aggressively, as they had a definite goal in mind. They wanted to see if one of them was able to dip under 29 minutes. It has been a while since that has been done at high altitude. In the end Namakoe Nkhasi just missed out doing so. He won the 10 000 metres in 29:00.06,' said Khoza.
Precious Mashele was second in 29:16 and Xolisa Tyali fourth in 29:42.
Chaumeton Maxime won the 1 500 m for under-18 boys in an impressive time of 4:08.
Another good performance was Derocious Makhobalo's victory in the 3 000 m steeplechase with a time of 9:23. Sipho Mhlanga was second in a time of 9:47.
Thabo Masina showed his rivals a clean pair of heels in the 3 000 m for under-20 boys, winning in 8:37. Kutlwisiso Sidinile was second in 8:51.
Hleziphi Ncayiyana, from the Nedbank Club in KwaZulu-Natal, is excited about the fact that athletes from his club managed to win marathons in two different provinces.
Thulani Duma won the Oasis Hotel Potties 5-in-1 marathon in a time of 2:41:00, and Mzwenkosi Mjaja won the Nosa Hillcrest Marathon running 2:30:58.
Ettiene Plaatjies won the Freedom 27 km Run in Paarl in a time of 1:31:31. John April, also from the Nedbank Running Club, was fourth in a time of 1:35:15.
In what should be no surprise the athletes coached by Pio Mpolokeng (Nedbank Running Club Central North West) again put up a good performance at last week's Athletics Central North West track and field meeting.
Tshepo Tshite won the 1 500 m in 3:53:00, with Joel Mmone coming second in 3:53.
Mmone was far from finished as he won the 5 000 m in 14:16. His teammate, David Manja, was second in 14:24.
Jonas Makhele finished third in the Pick n Pay Marathon, running a time of 2:30:40. Mnganiseni Mathibela won the women's 21 km with a time of 1:29:53.
Moses Kargat raced to a second-place finish in the Bronkhorstspruit 32 km. He stopped the clock at 1:49:52. Beryl Makokha won the women's race in 2:23:40.