“This year we shall be more resilience, more courageous and patriotic. We are focused on the big prize as no human is limited,” said Eliud Kipchoge.
By Seliphar Musungu
The 100m sensational sprinter Ferdinand Omanyala has been named as the 2021 Sportsman of the Year at a ceremony that was held on Tuesday night at Bukhungu stadium.
At the same time, double Olympic 1500m record holder Faith Kipyegon emerged as the 2021 Sportswoman of the year.
The Toky0 2020 Paralympics bronze winner Nancy Chelangat won the Sportswoman living with disability award while Simon Kibai got the Sportsman of the Year award for Persons Living with Disability in the men category.
Other awards went to Heriston Wanyonyi (Most Promising Boy), Teresia Muthoni ( Most Promising Girl), Sports Team Men of the Year ( Kenya 7s), Sports Team Women of the Year (Vihiga Queens) , Coach of the Year (Charlse Okere -Vihiga Queens) and the Hall of Fame award went to Esther Ouna.
Recognition award went to Eliud Kipchoge.
“Last year was a great year for me and this year (2022), I will do more exploits,” said Mr Omanyala after scooping the Sportsman of the year award.
Omanyala added : “I have been watching the Soya awards on TV for the last three years but today, am be watched across the country. I will work hard to win more titles this year,”
Ms Kipyegon, double Olympic 1500m champion said she was grateful to God after being named the Sportswoman of the year.
“This is the first Soya award I am winning and its very encouraging. In 2012, I was named the best promising girl in athletics and 10 years later, I am the sportswoman of the year,” said Kipyegon.
Eliud Kipchoge who received the recognition award said that 2020 was a challenging year for most athletes due to Covid19 but they bounced back to action in high spirits.
Mr Kipchoge said they had to content with training indoors, having to be vaccinated anytime they were flying out of the country, got isolated and quarantined for some days before participating in any games like the Olympics.
“This year we shall be more resilience, more courageous and patriotic. We are focused on the big prize as no human is limited,” said Kipchoge.
The fete was graced by Kakamega Deputy Governor Prof Philip Kutima, Dr Paul Tergat (Soya Awards founder), Nominated Senator Naomi Shiyonga, Josephta Mukobe, the Principal Secretary, State Department for Culture and Heritage and Soya Chairman Chris Mbaisi.
Kenyan retired international football maestro Dennis Oliech was also present.