NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 22 – Commonwealth and African 100m champion Ferdinand Omanyala has been named the LG/Sports Journalists Association of Kenya (SJAK) sportsperson of the month for July after his scintillating run in Birmingham.
The 26-year-old star sprint king became the first ever Kenyan in 60 years to win the Commonwealth Games title on August 3.
Omanyala clocked 10.02 seconds to restrict defending champion Akani Simbine from South Africa to second place in 10.13 sec.
“I am really delighted to have won this award not just this time but for the second time. I want to thank LG and SJAK for this gesture because it is always an encouragement for other sportsmen to keep working hard,” Omanyala told Capital Sport after receiving the award.
He added; “I want to keep winning it and next year I promise I will win more.”
For his troubles, Omanyala was awarded with an LG artificial intelligent 8kg washing machine retailing at Sh105,000, and was with his wife who was all jolly after being relieved of the duties, courtesy of the award.
In being named August’s best, he beat Kenya Sevens star Billy Odhiambo who breached the 100-try mark at the Los Angeles Sevens, Mary Moraa who won bronze at the World Championships and the Commonwealth 800m title as well as Paralympian Hellen Wawira who claimed bronze in the para-power lifting competition also in Birmingham.
Double 1500m World Champion Faith Kipyegon was also in the list of nominees having run the second fastest time in history at the Monaco leg of the Diamond League.
Other nominees included netball player Beatrice Bucho, Jackline Chepkoech for winning the 3000 Metres Steeplechase Gold on August 5 at the Commonwealth Games, Faisal Aden of Equity basketball team and Faith Chetotich for winning the 3000 Metres Steeplechase gold at the World Athletics U20 Championships in Pascual Guerrero Stadium.
“LG has been actively supporting the identification and recognition of sporting talent in Kenya through a partnership with SJAK. The purpose of this award is to recognize exceptional Kenyan sportsmen and women for their achievements across diverse disciplines each month and also to signify our commitment to contribute to the development of sport in the country,” said Marketing Manager LG East Africa Changhyun Kim, in a statement read by the Marketing and Communications boss Maureen Kemunto.
SJAK President Chris Mbaisi, on his part, thanked LG for their continued support over the past eight years.
“With the monthly award, we are seeing a growing number of upcoming and talented sports personalities among them Angela Okutoyi who won the Wimbledon Open Junior category and won this award for a record three times. Rewarding sportsmen and women is a is an important step towards whipping up the enthusiasts of sports personalities across all disciplines,” he said.