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Silver Lining For Wayde Van Niekerk As His Coach Ans Botha Is Honoured At IAAF Awards

Van Nierkerk lost out on athletics top prize, but his coach won as there was a silver lining for the 400m champion.

25/11/2017 10:55 SAST | Updated 25/11/2017 10:56 SAST
Siphiwe Sibeko / Reuters

South African Olympian Wayde Van Niekerk lost out on the top prize in athletics when he was not crowned the 2017 IAAF Athlete of the year.

Read: 5 Reasons Why Wayde Van Niekerk Is Becoming A National Treasure

Phil Noble / Reuters
REUTERS/Phil Noble

The 400m world champion lost out to Qatari high jumper Mustaz Essa Barshim, which now means Wayde has lost out at the South African sports awards, as well as at the world athletics awards.

There was a silver lining in the midst of Van Niekerk's loss, as his 76-year-old spring coach Ans Botha received a well-earned accolade on Friday night when she was honoured with the prestigious Coaching Achievement Award.

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(Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)

Read: Why Caster, Wayde and Luvo Deserve To Run Away With The IAAF Athlete Of The Year Award

Botha has had a lengthy career in athletics and has made a crucial contribution to Van Niekerk's progress in recent seasons.

"We congratulate everyone who was nominated for the award," said Aleck Skhosana, the president of Athletics South Africa.

"It's a great honour to be in the top three selections, even if you don't bring the trophy home. A special tribute to Tannie Botha who flew the national flag high following her crowning as the best coach in the world.

"We now call upon her to pass on her knowledge so that we can have more successful athletes and coaches from South Africa. Thank you for the good work."

VALERY HACHE via Getty Images
(Photo credit should read VALERY HACHE/AFP/Getty Images)