Taekwondo clean sweeps NSJF LG PoY Awards

Suresh Singh Ale honoured with Lifetime Achievement award • Rokaya wins Special Award

Kathmandu, August 20:

Taekwondo clean swept the NSJF LG Player of the Year (PoY) Awards 2006/07 as it collected four awards out of the four categories in contest.

Taekwondo players Deepak Bista, Manita Shahi and Ayesha Shakya won the Male, Female and Youth PoY awards respectively while their South Korean Coach Kwon Hyouk Joung was declared the best coach. Pioneer of Nepali boxing Suresh Singh Ale was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement award while athlete Hari Bahadur Rokaya was feted with the Special Award.

As the taekwondo players are undergoing training in South Korea, their parents — Mahabir Bista (Deepak’s father), Prem Shova Shahi (Manita’s mother) and Jujukaji Shakya (Ayesha’s father) — collected the prizes at a function organised by Nepal Sports Journalist Forum.

Three-time South Asian gold medallist Bista was one among the five nominees in the men’s category. Bista had won his third consecutive gold medal at the 10th SA Games in Colombo followed by a bronze medal in 15th Asian Games in Doha. Others nominated in the category were national cricket captain Binod Das, weightlifter Kamal Bahadur Adhikari, golfer Deepak Thapa Magar and wushu player Raj Kumar Rasaili.

Winner of the Female PoY Shahi is the 10th SA Games gold medallist and the 15th Asian Games bronze medallist. Other nominees in the category were athlete Kanchi Maya Koju, Ayesha Shakya, wushu player Bina Khadka Lama and Karateka Sulochana Sijakhwa.

Ayesha was adjudged the Youth PoY for her international successes in the 10th SA Games and 15th Asian Games. Other nominees in the category were cricketers Paras Khadka, Suvendu Pandey and Krishna Karki, and footballer Nirajan Malla.

Among the nominees for the best coach of the year were last year’s winner Roy Luke Dias (Cricket), Hira Singh Dangol (Karate), Gopal Shrestha (Wushu) and Tilak Bahadur Raut (Weightlifting).

Marathoner Rokaya is the Guinness Book of World Record holders as the high altitude marathon runner and three-time Everest Marathon winner. Himself a boxer, the 78-year-old Ale has been involved in the sport since 1956 till date. He is the man for producing legendary boxers like Puspa Dhoj Shahi, Ravi Raj Thapa and Dal Bahadur Rana Magar.

Winners in all the six categories were awarded with the NSJF LG Player of the Year trophy, a purse of Rs 10,000, LG Dynamite mobile set, wrist watch from LG, Mountain flight tickets from Buddha Air and gift hampers from Attsh and Nepal Judo Association. The nominees received trophies, wrist watch from LG and gift hampers from Attsh.

The added attractions of the award ceremony included the fashion show by various players, musical performances by Sudin Pokharel and friends and a dance sequence by bodybuilder Harish Shrestha.

State Minister for Education and Sports Mohan Singh Rathor, President of Federation of Nepali Journalists Bishnu Nisthuri, President of International Sports Press Association Gianni Merlo, Executive director of Chaudhary Group Nirman Chaudhary, NSC member secretary Jeevan Ram Shrestha, NOC president Dhruba Bahadur Pradhan, Buddha Air Sales Manager Parasar Jung Pandey, Chairman of Kamana Prakashan Puskar Lal Shrestha, AIG Amar Singh Shah, APF AIG Sanath Bahadur Basnet, NSJF president Niranjan Rajbanshi and NSJF general secretary Hemanta Raj Kafley gave away the prizes. Vijay Shahi of Attsh presented gift hamper to the AIPS president Merlo.