Winners: The women's squash team - Anndrea Naidoo, Angela Bonora, Gina Robinson and Siyoli Lusaseni - receive their award from guest speaker Dugald MacDonald at the 2005 Sports Awards Dinner.
The 2005 Sports Awards Dinner will go down as one of the most memorable for many a year.
That had partly to do with guest speaker Dugald MacDonald, the rugby "old boy" who in April this year braved cold, polar bears and the company of two other "Ikey Icemen" - Dr Peter Berning and Ted Adam - to walk nearly 800km to the Magnetic North Pole in the 2005 Polar Race, becoming the first South Africans to complete the journey. Now we'd like to tell you what MacDonald said at the UCT bash, but because this is a family publication, we can't. Other than to say that it was inspirational and had to do with what is commonly known as "The Varsity Spirit".
And that MacDonald had them rolling in the aisles. So much so that the evening's MC, reporter Dan Nicholl, described it as "the best speech I've ever heard" in his Monday column for iafrica.com. Like Nicholl, we can only recommend that you catch MacDonald holding court at a nearby pub - try the one at the UCT Rugby Club - or other soirÃ©e. Just don't take the kids.
The event will also be cherished by the many award winners, of course. After recognising - through the presentation of half or full UCT colours and honours awards - the many who have represented their provinces or the country at varied levels, and to outstanding club administrators, attention turned to the big trophies. These went to:
- The Jamison Cup for Sportsperson of the Year - chess player Jenine Ellappen (see story below), who won the African Junior Championship in January to earn the title of Woman International Master.
- The Butterworth Cup for a team that has excelled over a full season - the women's squash first team, winners of the WP premier league for the second year running, and who represented WP at the national club championships, played last week.
- The Landstem Trophy for a single outstanding performance by an individual or team - the women's hockey first team for their showing at the SASSU Games; coming in as long shots - it was their first year back in the A section - they made it into the finals, beating hot favourites Stellenbosch along the way.
- Club of the Year for overall organisation - the Tennis Club.
- The Transformation Trophy, now named the Keith Hart Transformation Trophy in honour of the late UCT staff member, awarded for outreach, transformation and development - the Rugby Club.
- Best First-Year Student - Bronwyn Finch, springboard diver, who is currently ranked number one in SA synchronised diving, and number two in both the 1m and 3m boards.
- The Chairperson's Award, made by Professor John Simpson, chair of UCT's Sports Council - Khaya Sontsele and Malibuye Tom for their involvement, on behalf of the UCT Rugby Club, with Lagunya, a team made up of players from Gugulethu and Nyanga that competes in the Western Province second division.
- The Turpin Cup for excellent and dedicated service to UCT sport over a number of years - JJ de Castro Maia, who served on SASSU-UCT for two years (including one as chair), was chair of the Capoeira Club for two years, led the drive to get UCT sports clubs involved in a SHAWCO project, and also won, at a UCT function the evening before, the 2005 Most Outstanding Student Leader in Sports Award.