Commonwealth Games competitors Zarck Visser and Bernadette Coston scooped up the highest sporting honours at the University of Johannesburg’s (UJ) Annual Sports Awards Gala on Thursday, 15 October 2014.
Glasgow silver medallist and African long-jump champion Visser leapt to a second straight victory in the Sportsman of the Year category, while South African hockey player Coston scooped both the Sportswoman and Student-Athlete of the Year awards.
Third-year transport management student Visser beat the likes of SA hockey players Brandon and Clinton Panther and national high-jump champion Kabelo Kgosiemang to retain his title as Standout Male Athlete.
The national, student and varsity Athletics champion is currently ranked seventh in the world with a season’s best leap of 8.31m.
With 110 national caps, Coston was a vital link in the South African team that took gold at the World Cup-qualifying Africa Cup in Kenya and finished second at the Investec Cup in London.
Coston also represented her country at the Commonwealth Games in Scotland and the Hockey World Cup in the Netherlands.
The fifth-year chiropractic student still maintained a solid academic performance with a 73 per cent average and 18 distinctions over the course of her studies.
Master of ceremonies and UJFM sports editor, Andrew Hope, said the finalists’ achievements were made even more remarkable by the fact that everyone was a full-time student. “Essentially just to be a nominee requires an exceptional amount of dedication and commitment from these students not only to their sport, but also to their studies and, from that, their future,” said Hope.
In the club category for non-students, Coston’s teammate Lilian du Plessis and Commonwealth triple-jump champion Khotso Mokoena took the women’s and men’s awards.
For more information on sport developments, visit www.uj.ac.za/ujsport