Zandberg bags two top awards

Pretoria-based national swimming squad captain Gerhard Zandberg collected the Personality of the Year and 'Swimmer of the Year awards as athletes, coaches and officials were honoured at Swimming SA's Yearlyl Aquatics Awards at Emperors Palace on Saturday evening.

Pretoria-based national swimming squad captain Gerhard Zandberg collected the Personality of the Year and 'Swimmer of the Year awards as athletes, coaches and officials were honoured at Swimming SA's Yearlyl Aquatics Awards at Emperors Palace on Saturday evening.

In the Personality of the Year category, Zandberg, world champion in the 50 metres backstroke, came out on top in a public poll conducted via sms line and the national federation's website www.swimsa.co.za.

The other finalists in this category were 50 metres butterfly world record-holder Roland Schoeman, Soweto-based breaststroke swim star Thabang Moeketsane and disabled swimmer Natalie du Toit.

While Arizona-based Schoeman won the Best Performance of the Year award, for his world record set in Hamburg, breaststroke star Cameron van der Burgh and Cape Town teenage swimming sensation Jessica Pengelly, made trips to the stage for the Most Promising Athlete of the Year awards in the male and female categories respectively.

"From an awards perspective, the performances and efforts of persons were taken into account for the period of April 30 2006 to May 1 2007.

"And with the opening leg of the Fina/Arena Swimming World Cup to be held at the Kings Park Aquatics Centre in Durban on October 19-20, we look forward to witnessing our swimmers striving to give of their best in front of their home fans against a class foreign challenge," said Swimming SA President Jace Naidoo, whose father, the late Morgan Naidoo, was honoured posthumously with a Lifetime Achievement award for his contribution to swimming in SA.

Swimming SA 2006 Yearly Aquatics Awards winners: Learn to Swim Instructor awards - Erich Harley, Penny Quinlan, Pamela Reynecke Development Club of the Year - Umlazi Sharks Administrator of the Year - Peter Thompson;

Volunteer of the Year - Thomas Rabapane Coach of the Year - Santa van Jaarsveld Journalist of the Year (Print) - Thomas Ballantyne (Independent Newspapers) Journalist of the Year (Radio) - Johann Russouw (SABC) Journalist of the Year (Television) - Samm Marshall (e.tv) Special Mention Journalist - Maseru Koaho (SABC); Most Promising Athlete of the Year - Male: Cameron van den Burgh, Female: Jessica Pengelly

Disabled Athlete of the Year - Natalie du Toit Synchronised Swimmer of the Year - Judy van Niekerk Water Polo Player of the Year - Ryan Bell Open Water Swimmer of the Year. - Sapa

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