Celtic reward top guns after a tough season

BLOEMFONTEIN Celtic goalkeeper Patrick Tignyemb received two prestige awards at the team's annual season-ending function in Bloemfontein on Sunday night. Tignyemb won R120000 after scooping the players' player and player of the year awards for the 2009-10 season.

The former Cameroonian Under-23 captain also won a R3 000 voucher for his role in helping Celtic finish in the top-eight bracket.

"'I'm very happy being chosen as one of the best performers by management and my teammates and this has inspired me to work even harder for the new season," he said.

Tlou Segolela and Nigerian-born midfielder Prince Olomu were also hot favourites for the accolade.

Both were equally important in helping the team achieve their objective. Segolela, whose performance earned him a call-up to Bafana Bafana, received the award of the most promising player, which carries a R15000 award. Olomu's 13 goals earned him the top goal-scorer award. He got R40000.

Other recipients on the night were Congolese midfielder Denis Kalala, who received the rookie of the year award, winning R15000, and captain Thabo Nthethe, who took home the R20000 sportsmanship award. Celtic boss Jimmy Augousti and head coach Owen da Gama expressed their satisfaction with the overall performance of the team. "We had a tough season because it was shortened by the Fifa Soccer World Cup, but the boys punched beyond their weight to ensure that we finished the season in a respectable position. I'm proud of them," Da Gama said.

"It was also a challenging season because we did not have suitable players in certain departments."