Kingston celebrates sporting stars

'Team of the Year', Holy Cross Catholic School Handball Team, stand with the Mayor, Councillor Roy Arora, Mayoress Manisha Arora and Councillor Andrea Craig, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Sport.

Athletes and coaches alike were celebrated at the annual Kingston Sports Awards on Wednesday 9 December 2015.

Athletes and coaches alike were celebrated by the Mayor and Mayoress of the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, Councillor Roy Arora and Manisha Arora, and Councillor Andrea Craig at the annual Kingston Sports Awards on Wednesday 9 December.

Councillor Roy Arora, Mayor of Kingston, said: 

“It was a fantastic evening, where we celebrated the staggering achievements of our home-grown athletes and coaches, who've gone on to make a difference to our local community, as well as on a national and even international scale."

Councillor Andrea Craig, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Sport at Kingston Council, said:

“Sport can make such a difference, it brings people together and provides support and motivation. We are so proud of the aspiration of every nominated team and individual. We were inundated with nominations this year, which shows the huge local passion and pride for sport within our borough.”

The winners were:

  • Mayor’s Trophy – Craig Conway, Assistant Team Manager of the Kingston Royals Swimming Club, was celebrated for his enthusiasm, motivating the teams and working tirelessly to share his sports knowledge with the Club.
  • Eileen Gray Award (awarded to those who inspire others) – Marcus Cabeca, who runs the Afro Brazilian Martial Art club ‘Axe Capoeria’, was nominated by a number of people for his dedication to mentoring his students to reach their full potential. 
  • Disabled Sportsperson of the Year – Daniel Wolff, who has autism, received the award for representing the borough at national level as well as winning gold and bronze medals at the Special Olympics World Games in Las Vegas this year.
  • Club of the Year – Kingston Royals Swimming Club has over 500 members and is managed by volunteers, who have helped the Club achieve a fantastic top 3 Club placement in Surrey and a top 10 club placement in London this year.
  • Team of the Year - Holy Cross Catholic Girls School Handball Team have experienced success at a high level, finishing third in the National Schools Handball Championship and this year the girls represented the borough at the London Youth Games Handball Competition, bringing home a silver medal. 
  • Neil Desai Award (awarded to those under the age of 21 who give back to the community) - Nourredine Aitouarab was celebrated for his growth and maturity since starting at the Afro Brazilian Martial Art club ‘Axe Capoeria’, having now progressed into being a teacher, taking the lead and sharing his passion with others.
  • Sports Achiever of the Year - Sellathurai Ganeshalingam, 67, was celebrated for not only winning bronze at the World Championships in 2014, but coaching over 130 students both locally and further afield. 

In a closely-fought race for ‘Team of the Year’, St Philips School Cricket Team were recognised as ‘highly commended’ for their achievements in the last year. 

The ceremony was followed by presentations for members of the London Youth Games and Mini Marathon teams.