The Gauteng Sport Awards are part of Gauteng Provincial Government’s drive to creating an environment that is conducive to the development of sporting excellence, recognition of talent and inspiration of future generations.
The duo of Martin Erasmus and Fernando Booysen were announced as nominees in their respective categories by Gauteng Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation MEC Faith Mazibuko at a function in Randfontein on August 2.
Nominations were launched and opened to all communities in Gauteng on June 7.
Winners will be announced at the Silverstar Casino on September 2.
Booysen (16) was nominated as one of three finalists in the School Sport Athlete of the Year category.
The young Hoërskool Hugenote (in Springs) learner is the only wrestler in the country to have earned qualification to the 2018 Summer Youth Olympic Games, to be held in Buenos Aries, Argentina in October.
“There has never been a South African wrestler who has won a medal at the Youth Olympics so I would like to be the first,” said Booysen in a recent interview with the Herald.
It won’t be easy for the teenage wrestler to win the award as he is pipped against two other impressive school sportspeople in wheelchair tennis player Alwande Skhosana (the number one junior boy in South Africa for the past three years) and rower Caitlin Bentley.
Erasmus, of course, needs no introduction.
He was nominated as the Gauteng Sportsman of the Year.
The ‘Brakpan Bulldog’ produced a stunning performance to win gold in the men’s 97kg division at the Commonwealth Games in April.
It is South Africa’s first Commonwealth Games wrestling gold medal since 1958.
“I don’t feel like a hero,” said Erasmus in an interview after his gold medal win.
“I just want to set a good example for the little ones.”
He too is not guaranteed to scoop the big award though as he finds himself up against three incredible South African sportsmen in the form of Protea cricket stars Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi as well as breakthrough Lions and Springbok rugby star Aphiwe Dyantyi.