Veteran winger Akona Ndungane was on Wednesday named the Vodacom Bulls’ Super Rugby Players Player of the Year, while another stalwart Willie Wepener walked away with the Currie Cup Players Player of the Year Award.
These two were amongst a host of awards given to players and staff at the Blue Bulls Company’s annual lunch, which incorporated the awards.
Ndungane was also named best back for the Currie Cup side, capping a fine season for the veteran.
Barend van Graan, CEO of the BBM, thanked the coaching staff and players as well as the BBC’s employees, many of whom received service certificates as well.
“We did not achieve our expected strike rate with regards to trophies and titles with only our Under-21s, Women Sevens and Craven Week sides that won their tournaments, but it was still very successful in many ways. Our Super Rugby side made the top six and play-offs of Super Rugby, the Currie Cup team played in the semi-finals and our Under-19’s made their final. A host of our players also represented the Springboks and a number of our junior players starred for the Junior Springboks in the winning of the IRB Junior World Championships,” Van Graan said.
“We lost a lot of our coaching staff to the Springboks as well, so in all, it was a good year for us in many ways. Our office staff excelled as well and I am happy that we could honour their contribution too.”
Vodacom Bulls coach Frans Ludeke said the rewards will motivate his troops for the new season.
“It is always nice to reward people and a lot of these awards did just that. We are blessed to have some truly professional players in our set-up and they work very hard. This creates a fantastic work ethic, one the Blue Bulls are very proud of. Congratulations to the winners, it was well deserved. With next year’s pre-season just starting, these awards also serves as a timely reminder that hard work will pay off in the end.”
The various Players Awards were:
Super Rugby 2012
Players Player of the Year: Akona Ndungane
Most Promising Player of the Year: Arno Botha
Forward of the Year: Juandré Kruger
Back of the Year: Zane Kirchner
Currie Cup 2012
Players Player of the Year: Willie Wepener
Most Promising Player of the Year: Louis Fouché
Forward of the Year: Dewald Potgieter
Back of the Year: Akona Ndungane
Vodacom Cup 2012
Players Player of the Year: Ruan Snyman
Most Promising player of the Year: Jan Serfontein
Forward of the Year: Cornell Hess
Back of the Year: Ruan Snyman
Management Award: Tim Dlulane
Vodacom Blue Bulls Under-21
Players Player of the Year: Juan Schoeman
Most Promising Player of the Year: Marvin Orie
Forward of the Year: Wiaan Liebenberg
Back of the Year: Courtnall Skosan
Management Award: Andrè Volsteedt
Vodacom Blue Bulls Under-19
Players player of the Year: Ruan Steenkamp
Most Promising Player of the Year: Andrew Beerwinkel
Forward of the Year: Jacques du Plessis
Back of the Year: Burger Odendaal
Management Award: Zama Dyidi
• Various service certificates were also given out and the following staff members received those:
Barend van Graan (5 years 11 months); Sina Madisha (6y, 5m); Naseema Dawood (7y 3m); Douglas Chauke (7y 5m); Ian Schwartz (7y 5m); Tracey-Lee Lombard (8y 10m); Bronwyn Findlay (9y 4m); Simon Mnguni (9y 8m); Nini Madisha (10y 4m); Andries Kabinde (10y 9m); Joanè Venter (10y, 9m); Heidi Visagie (11y 3m); Marlene Strydom (11y, 10m); Karin Visser (12y 11m); Pienkie Loots (13y 9m); Hugo Kemp (14y); Nola Padiacy (17y 3m); Heino Noeth (18y 6m); Wynie Strydom (20y 11m); Ephraim Ndhlovu (21y 6m); John Maimane (21y 9m); Sam Ngobeni (33y 5m).
Employees' Employee of the Year: Joanè Venter