Kenya’s pioneering javelin thrower Julius Yego is the 2015 Safaricom Sports Personality of the Year.
The 27-year-old broke the African record twice and national record four times on his way to becoming the first Kenya to win a World title in field events.
Yego, who is based at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations, had earlier on claimed the Sportsman of the Year Award, beating fellow athletes Asbel Kiprop, who won his third World 1,500m title and World Cross Country champion Geoffrey Kamworor in that order.
Those who failed to make the top three were Harambee Stars and Gor Mahia striker Michael Olunga and hockey player Linus Sang.
KIYENG ON TOP
World 3,000m steeplechase champion Hyvin Kiyeng outclassed international wing attacker Mercy Moim (volleyball) and World Half Marathon record holder Florence Kiplagat to emerge Sportswoman of the Year. Nune Bonaya (Shooting) and Naomi Wafula (Golf) and Gladys Cheron o(Athletics) failed to make the top three.
“It’s a humbling experience and a big honour that the country can recognise and appreciate what I have done,” said Yego as he received the glamorous trophy. At hand to deliver the accolades to Yego, who is also the 2014 Commonwealth champion, was chief celebrity guest and former Cameroonian international Patrick M’Boma, who was flanked by Sports Cabinet Secretary Hassan Wario and Soya founder Paul Tergat.
STARTED SEASON WELL
Yego started his 2015 season well with victory in Ostrava Golden Spike javelin on May 26 where he broke his own Kenyan record with a new throw of 86.88m.
He would improve it on June 4 to 87.71m at the Golden Gala in Rome where he finished second. Three days later, Yego won his maiden Diamond League event in Birmingham with a record breaking 91.39m.
Birmingham would set the stage for his exploits at the World Championships on August 26 where his third and massive throw of 92.72m won gold. The distance was enough for a new African record and the third all-time best.
Kumari Taki, who won the Africa and World Youth 1,500m title won the Most Promising Award Award for men while World Cross Country champion Agnes Jebet reigned supreme in the women's category.
Kenyan Premier League champions Gor Mahia won Team of The Year (men), beating National men’s hockey team and Kenya Simbas rugby team respectively.
The national women’s volleyball team, Malkia Strikers claimed Team of the Year (women) edging out Malkia Strikers team that won the African Games gold and Africa Club hockey champions Telkom Orange to second and third respectively.
Gor Mahia won the KPL for a record 15th time after finishing the league unbeaten besides reaching the Cecafa Club Championship final. Malkia Strikers spiked off their intentions in Nairobi winning their ninth Africa Cup of Nations. They won their first international title in Group III of the FIVB World Grand Prix to get promoted to Group II.
Former National women’s volleyball team, Malkia Strikers coach David Lung’ah was named the Coach of the Year, beating Kenya Commercial Bank Rugby Football Club’s Curtis Olago and Julius Kirwa (Athletics).
Edna Rotich won the Community Hero Award as Brian Hawkins (Shooting), John Mucheru (Golf), Violet Baraza (Volleyball) were inducted into the Hall of Fame.
HOW THEY PERFORMED
Sports Personality of the Year:
Julius Yego (Athletics-javelin)
Sportsman of the Year:
1. Julius Yego (Athletics), 2.Asbel Kiprop (Athletics), 3.Geoffrey Kamworor (Athletics)
Sportswoman of the Year:
1. Hyvin Kiyeng (Athletics), 2. Mercy Moim (Volleyball), 3. Florence Kiplagat (Athletics)
1. Agnes Jebet (Athletics), 2. Cellphine Chespol (Athletics), 3. Rebecca Kamau (swimming)
1. Kumari Taki (Athletics), 2. Vincent Kipyegon (Athletics), 3. Jeremy Wahome (Motorsport)
Sportswoman of the Year (Disability):
1. Cecilia Wangechi (Athletics), Hellen Wawira (Powerlifting), Susan Gatwiri (Athletics), Joyline Jemutai (Athletics)
Sportsman of the Year (Disability):
1.Onesmus Mutinda (Special Olympics), 2. Alex Komen (Athletics), David Korir (Athletics)
Team of the Year-Men:
1. Gor Mahia (Soccer), 2. National Hockey team (Hockey), 3. Kenya Simba 15s (Rugby)
Team of the Year-Women:
1.Malkia strikers (Volleyball), 2. Malkia Strikers- All Africa Games Team(Volleyball), 3. Telkom Orange (Hockey)
Ezekiel Kemboi (Athletics)
Coach of the Year:
David Lung’aho (Volleyball)
Comeback of the Year:
Lawrence Buyachi (Rugby)
Sports Federation of the Year:
1.The Kenya Volleyball Federation, 2. Kenya Rowing and Canoeing, 3. Boxing Association
School Team of the Year-Girls:
1. Sinyolo Girls (Hockey), 2. AIC Kosirai (Volleyball), Trans Nzoia Mixed(Hockey)
School Team of the Year-Boys:
1. Laiser Hill Academy (Rugby), 2. Narok Boys (Hockey), 3. St Peters Mumias Chesirikwa (handball)
School Coach of the Year:
Kelvin Lugalia (St Anthony Boys)-hockey
School Most Outstanding Performance-Boys:
David Parisitao (Ngoleni Secondary School (Javelin)
School Most Outstanding Performance-Girls:
(Shadrack Kimalel) Tennis
Hall of Fame:
Brian Hawkins (Shooting), John Mucheru (Golf), Violet Baraza (Volleyball)