The gsport Annual List of Newsmakers

Thank you for joining us today, at the first-ever gsport annual lunch – I surprised everybody, because I didn’t tell you why we’re here, but today is a very special day. Thirteen years ago when we launched, there was no positive coverage of women’s sport, and today we have announced our first-ever list of ten newsmakers of women’s sport in 2019. (Applause) It’s hard to choose a list of 10 in 2019, because there’s a list of 100 women who could have made the list of 10. And, in the end, we looked at outstanding achievements this year – in terms of breaking new ground. In terms of changing the game. It was a tough choice, lots of WhatsApp debates, and all of that. And, I am very pleased to announce – – as someone brings out a certificate for me to hand over to Hazel, that our 2019 Newsmaker of the Year is actually here today! I know it’s the festive season, but it’s great to have her here: The 2019 gsport Newsmaker of the Year is the President of Netball South Africa, Cecilia Molokwane. (Loud cheering and whooping) (More applause) Congratulations to Cecilia, who’s brought the Netball World Cup to South Africa in 2023 (Cheering) And who has after a personally most challenging year out of anyone in South African sport, and she has championed women’s sport like an absolute star! (Whooping) And, considering it is a gathering where we have other newsmakers here, we would also like to honour the other people on the list, and … Cecilia, thank you very much and congratulations: So, so well deserved! (Cheering) And making a very special mark as a newsmaker, she was the Momentum gsport Athlete of the Year, the current CAF African Women’s Player of the Year, Thembi Kgatlana! (Loud cheering and whooping) Congratulations to Thembi! (More applause) And Thembi is once again up for CAF African Women’s Player of the Year, she’s been shortlisted once again, and she has all our support! (Clapping) So, there’s once team in women’s sport in South Africa that has stood head and shoulders above everyone else: Fourth at the World Cup and, Conquerors of Africa, representing the SPAR Proteas is the captain: Bongi Msomi! (Loud cheering and whooping) (More applause) Congratulations to Bongi, and we are so, so proud of what you have done … (Msomi:) And the team! (Voices in agreement) Our next Newsmaker to honour today is a woman who lead the Springbok Women’s Rugby team to qualification at the 2021 Rugby World Cup, and she’s just become the first South African woman to sign a professional contract in Spain – Babalwa Latsha! (Loud cheering and whooping) She leaves to Spain on the ninth of January, and we’re so, so very proud that she’s the first woman from to South Africa to sign in Spain. (More applause) And the final Newsmaker is not here today, but she is represented, and she is well-supported by Momentum as she goes and charts her way around the world, summitting incredible summits, she is the first African woman to summit Mount Everest, and currently trailing incredible blazes, we are now going to honour the incredible Saray Khumalo. And, accepting on her behalf is Nontokozo Madonsela! (Madonsela:) I’m not Saray! (Whooping and laughter) A big congratulations to Saray Khumalo … (Madonsela:) This is for Saray! (Laughter) For what she’s done for supporting South African women in sport in 2019, a round of applause for Nontokozo Madonsela! (Applause) o, that’s the formalities, really, and now its for selfies and photos and just crazy stuff, but thank you so much for being here, (Music fades in as as audio fades out)

Stephen Childs

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