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De Jonge ANSA favourite


ZIMBABWE’S top golfer, Brendon de Jonge, who currently ranks 39th in Money Leaders on the PGA Tour, is favourite to win Sportsman of the Year at the 15th edition of the Annual National Sport Awards (ANSA).


With a shortlist that includes track and field athlete Paul Madzivire, Rodwell Makoto for chess, marathon runner Stephen Muzhingi and Olympians Cuthbert Nyasango and Wirimai Juwawo, competition for the ANSA prize to be announced tomorrow, is not too intense.

The annual awards were first introduced 15 years ago by the Sports and Recreation Commission in order to recognise, celebrate and reward Zimbabwean sporting excellence.

Knowing that 32-year-old de Jonge is a favourite after failing to match or better his most successful season – which was in 2010 – represents a forlorn decline in Zimbabwean sport this year.

If de Jonge is to win the Sportsman of the Year award, he will find himself within a good chance of claiming the Sportsperson of the Year which will be slightly more competitive.

This year’s ANSA awards have come under criticism for seemingly simply rewarding decent efforts in a pool of mediocrity.

It may have been a difficult year for Zimbabwean sport, but re-evaluations of certain sporting organisations like Zifa and talented youths coming up (15-year-old Sean Crocker of golf and Manchester City’s Under-21 captain Tinotenda Chibharo) could soon stand as the nation’s beacons of hope.

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