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2017 Swansea Sports Awards Winners

We are very pleased to announce the winners of the 2017 Swansea Sports Awards.

Swansea University Sport Swansea
Sportsperson of the Year sponsored by Swansea UniversityOpens new window

  • Dewi Griffiths

Dewi Griffiths has had a remarkable season on the track, on the road and at cross country. He has achieved 8 new personal bests ranging from 1500, 3,000, 5,000 and 10,000 metres on the track through to 10K, half marathon and marathon on the road. He ended the season as the UK no1 for 2017 in the marathon and 10K and UK ranked 3rd in the half marathon. He has also been a great club athlete representing Swansea Harriers on numerous times throughout the season winning British Athletics League track races, Gwent League and national cross country races and key road relay races for the club. Swansea Harriers won the national (UK) twelve and six stage road relay races with Dewi recoding the fastest leg in each event. Dewi is now one of the top distance runners in the UK and one of the best of all time in Wales.

University Wales Trinity St David
Junior Sportswoman of the Year sponsored by University of Wales Trinity St DavidOpens new window

  • Lauren Williams

Lauren has had an exceptional season in both the 400metres and her specialist event the 400m hurdles. She has captained Wales at the Welsh Indoor International for U20 and U18 athletes in March, and gained a GB and NI International vest over the 400m hurdles at the Manchester International in August. She is ranked No 2 in the UK U20W for the 400m hurdles and broke the club 400mH record with her time of 59.88 at the British Athletics Championships in July and the club's 400m record with 55.86 in the UKW league Premier Division match in Bromley in July. She has competed regularly for the club in both the UK Women's senior League and the UK Youth Development League. In December, Lauren obtained Welsh Athletics support as one of 9 athletes as part of the Futures Cymru Support programme.

University Wales Trinity St David
Junior Sportsman of the Year sponsored by University of Wales Trinity St DavidOpens new window

  • Lewis Fraser

Coached by Hayley Baker at Swansea Aquatics, Lewis Fraser is one of the outstanding young British swimmers in his category. In Wales, he has long been one of the outstanding young British swimmers in the Breaststroke category, but in 2017 he emerged as a future senior international star. A former British record holder for 200m Breaststroke, he also holds a number of Welsh junior swimming records. In 2017, while on duty in December with the British team in Canada, he broke the Welsh Senior record for the 50m Breaststroke. In June, he made his debut for Great Britain at the European Junior Championships in Israel, where he won Silver in the 50m Breaststroke. Competing for Wales in July at the Youth Commonwealth Games in the Bahamas, Lewis became Junior Commonwealth champion for the 100m Butterfly, while also collecting Bronze in the 50m Butterfly. Elsewhere in the season, he took Silver in the British Junior Championships.


Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability sponsored by Park Lives SwanseaOpens new window

  • Julie Thomas

Julie only took up bowls in 2014 and has achieved phenomenal success in a short time. She is completely blind but her talent has seen her compete against sighted bowlers. Julie is the first person to hold the British Isles Indoor and Outdoor Titles at the same time in Wales, and even retained them in October of this year, her third British Isles title. In April 2017 she won Interstadia VI Triples at Dinefwr, the 1st event of its kind, and in June Julie attended her first ever international event, winning Bronze at the International Test Event at Broadbeach, Australia. Julie has become the first completely blind bowler to be selected to play for her county (a sighted team). In August she won the West Glam County Rink Champions (Sighted), and in September won Cardiff Rotary Triples against teams across Wales. She capped off the year in November when she was selected to be a member of Team Wales for the commonwealth games in Australia.

Arriva Trains Wales Disability Sport Wales

Junior Sportsperson of the Year with a Disability sponsored by Arriva Trains WalesOpens new window in partnership with Disability Sport WalesOpens new window

  • Kyle Jones

Kyle suffers from a rare genetic disorder (one of only twenty five people in the world have been diagnosed with), which involves learning difficulties, speech impediment, delayed growth. Despite this, Kyle has joined Dragon School of Combat and under the coaching of Andrew Burt and Peter Hayward has excelled in Judo. Entering numerous local competitions, he has also brought home Bronze in Stoke Mandeville and Gold in the British Schools SN. He was then honoured to represent team GB SN in the first ever special needs world championships in Cologne in October, which involved eight competitors with Kyle being the only Welshman. In the opening ceremony, Kyle led the three hundred judokas onto the mats and went on to win a Silver for team GB SN, narrowly losing out on a Gold by a few seconds to go. Now ranked second in the world in his weight class, Judo has helped to turn his life around.

Active Swansea
Performance Coach of the Year sponsored by Active SwanseaOpens new window

  • Hayley Baker

Hayley Baker, of City of Swansea Aquatics, is one of those leading change as the only female Head Coach of a Performance Club in Wales. A former national swimming medallist herself, she is widely recognised as one of the coaches who will lead the next generation of British swimmers to international success. Already part of the Welsh national coaching squad for a number of years, 2017 has seen her strengthen her place within Team GB, including being part of the team which travelled to the World Junior Championships in Indianapolis, US in August 2017. In 2017, she also took Swansea Aquatics to the National Arena Swimming League finals, placing the club among the Top 20 among over 1,200 swimming clubs in England and Wales. In December, the club sealed its place in the 2018 Finals, to be held in Cardiff in April. This year saw a record number of her swimmers qualify for the British Summer Championships in Sheffield. She has had one swimmer selected for Team GB and eleven swimmers selected for Welsh Junior teams, more than from any other swimming club in Wales.

360 Watersports
Community Coach of the Year sponsored by 360 Beach & WatersportsOpens new window

  • Alan Honeyman

Swansea City Bravehearts Disabled FC have been benefiting from Alan's enthusiasm for more than 15 years. Alan first got involved when he brought his disabled son along to take part in their training sessions and, feeling that he could make a difference to the club,  offered his services as a coach and 15 years on he has only missed two training session. Despite not having any previous coaching experience, Alan has taken to mentoring players with ease.  The club and all those involved benefit greatly from his skills. Concerned that some players were being left behind in training, Alan created a novice group to ensure that those that needed greater support were given the opportunity to go through more focused sessions, resulting in remarkable improvements on and off the pitch. He has been the club treasurer for most of this 15 years and for the last several years has been running the club with the help of his wife Debbie and other volunteers. He organises tournaments with other disability clubs in south wales, arranging buses to take the members and their families to the away tournaments.  He also raises money for the club. 

Sport Wales
Volunteer of the Year sponsored by Sport WalesOpens new window

  • Wendy Pressdee

Wendy Pressdee has been the secretary of Swansea Netball League since 1982, and secretary of the Youth League Swansea since it began 21 years ago. She completes these alongside her position as Vice President of Welsh Netball on the Welsh Netball Board

For 19 years she has been the manager for Welsh squads of all age groups, from the U17's to the U21's, to the senior squads and also the Celtic Dragons.

She helps to organise umpiring awards, coaching courses and in 2015 also trained five new bench officials, helping with mentoring and assessing.

She is also the team manager for the U11, U13 and U15 LA Hub in Swansea, as well as the manager for the PTC (performance) and DTC (development) for Afan Nedd Tawe. Wendy is the only technical official for tournaments and competitions in Wales. Her career has seen her pick up a number of awards, included the 2014 BBC Sport Wales Volunteer of the Year, 2015 Welsh Sports Association Volunteer of the Year, and Manager of the Year on three occasions.

Inspiring Young Person of the Year sponsored by ArvatoOpens new window

  • Kimberley Mpukusa

Kimberley Mpukusa began playing tennis at an early age, and became the number one Welsh under 18s tennis player. Coached by her dad Phillip Mpukusa, she stopped playing when she was 13 because of her family's asylum case, which made it harder for them to travel for practice and competition.

However, she continued her training using many of Swansea's local parks after her family was granted indefinite stay and since July 2016, Kimberley has been actively involved in the BME Sport Cymru project, which aims to make a difference to the inclusion of BME communities in sport.

Her achievements in tennis alongside the challenges she has overcome in her life, have been an inspiration to the people of Swansea and the impact has been seen in the development of BME tennis in particular. Her sporting achievements match her significant work in the community, winning the Aegon British Tour Newcastle 2017, the Fields in Trust Young Champion and the Black History Month Sports Award. She also qualified for the main draw in ITF Ireland, and was and Aegon British Tour Masters 2017 quarter finalist.

Eyst BME Sport
Senior Club or Team of the Year sponsored by Eyst BME SportsOpens new window

  • Swansea Harriers

Swansea Harriers have probably had their most successful on and off track year in 2017 with both the Men's and Women's Teams having success. On track, the men have gained promotion in the British Athletics League for the third year running and will now compete in the Premier Division for the first time ever. The men join the women in their respective Premier Divisions, being only one of three clubs in the UK in both Premierships.

Off track, the men won both the National (UK) Twelve Stage Road Relay Championships in April and then the National Six Stage Championships in October, becoming the top road running club in the UK. At a Welsh level, the men are Welsh Cross Country Champions and Welsh Road Relay Champions. The combined Men's and Women's Team also won the Welsh Track and Field League Championship. Members of the team have also been in the headlines, with Josh Griffiths and Matthew Rees dominating both front and back page headlines after their exploits at the London Marathon. Dewi Griffiths is the UK no1 10K and marathon runner for 2017 and Jonathan Hopkins No 5 UK ranked in the 3000m steeplechase - with both alongside Josh Griffiths hopefully being selected for the Welsh Commonwealth Games Team having made the A qualifying standard.

Peter Lynne & Partners
Junior Club or Team of the Year sponsored by Peter Lynn and PartnersOpens new window

  • Swansea City Hockey Club Juniors

Amongst their 2017 achievements, this year saw the Under 13s Boys team go unbeaten all season - winning 36 games and drawing 2. The squad of 14 players included five newcomers in 2017 who picked up a stick for the first time, joining those who started as Under 11s, Under 9s or even Under 7s. Bringing everyone up to speed has been achieved through the coaching skills of Les Malinovski, Danny Geach and Mike Kyriakides as well as peer support from the more established Under 13s players. All of their success has been achieved through just 45 minutes of coaching a week.

However, many of the team also assist with training younger teams and have moved on to playing in the Swansea City Hockey Men's teams - again with great success.

In 2017, not only were the Under 13s side unbeaten, the Club were also the winners of the South Wales Cup 2017 and the Wales National Cup 2017. Six players were also selected for the South Wales Region, five for the Wales Dragons under 14's squad for the UK Inter-Regional Tournament and one for the UK Lions National Squad.

Wales National Pool Swansea

Primary School Team of the Year sponsored by Wales National Pool SwanseaOpens new window

  • Newton Primary School Athletics Team

The Athletics team at Newton Primary have had a very impressive competitive season, with four 1st place finishes throughout the season including the Winter League, Area Cross Country and County league.

Gower College New 2018
Secondary School Team of the Year sponsored by Gower College SwanseaOpens new window

  • Bishopston Comprehensive Yr 8 Football Team

Bishopston Comprehensive Yr. 8 Football Team have had a highly successful year, winning every game in the Swansea League and in the process winning the league itself. They were also able to beat every school in Wales and won the Welsh Cup, beating Creuddyn 3-1 in the final at Oswestry.


Lifetime Contribution to Sport Award

  • Alan Petherbridge, Samurai Judo Club

The 2017 winners were announced in a special ceremony held at the Brangwyn Hall on Wednesday 14 March 2018.


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