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Young athletes reap the rewards.

Byline: Louise Day

YOUNG sportsmen and women of the future have been given their first taste of the winners' podium.

Ninety-two of Cardiff's prestigious athletes, football players and rugby stars were rewarded for their achievements in front of 350 guests at the second Lord Mayor's Sports Awards 2002.

Hosted by Lord Mayor Russell Goodway, the ceremony recognised the success and achievements of individuals and teams, all of whom were aged between eight and 16.

A host of disciplines were rep-resented, including football, rugby, netball, cricket, athletics, karate and boxing, and many of the winners had already played at county or national level.

Speaking at the awards evening at City Hall, Mr Goodway said the awards were recognition of in-dividual ability and a way of celebrating the future of sport in Cardiff.

``Without a doubt sport is part and parcel of Cardiff's culture and its way of life,'' he said. ``Sports fans worldwide are becoming increasingly aware of where Cardiff is and what it has to offer as a result of what they see on the television screens.

``But we have to recognise that those facilities have to be supported by the necessary sports development opportunities for young people.

``The hallmark of these awards is that it would be more of a sin in Cardiff not to try than it is to try and fail,'' he added.

First, second and third place awards were presented for the best team, best girl and best boy, in a number of different age categories. The trophies, plaques and medals were handed out by sports people who have already made their name on the international playing field, including members of Glamorgan County Cricket Club, former Welsh rugby international Derwyn Jones and Kerry Ann Sheppard, Welsh junior badminton champion and Welsh representative at the Commonwealth Games in Manchester this year.

Katie Daley, 16, from Llanrumney, winner of the best girl in the 12-16 category for representing Wales at junior and senior level football, said: ``I knew I was nominated but I was shocked when I heard my name because there were a lot of other people who have achieved so much.''

And the winners are.....# Best team aged 8-11: 1st Hywel Dda Junior School football team; 2nd Ysgol Bro Eirwg rugby team; 3rd St Fagans Church in Wales School football team.

# Best team aged 12-16: 1st Llanrumney High School girls football team; 2nd UWIC School of Netball; 3rd Fitzalan High School under 14s football team. # Best team girl aged 8-11: 1st Kelly Dorning, from the Glamorgan Wanderers RFC; 2nd Laura Warner, St Mellons Saracens rugby team; 3rd Kayleigh Robinson, St Mellons Saracens.

# Best girl 12-16: 1st Katie Daley, junior and senior Welsh football; Lauren Page, Hawthorn School of Karate in Whitchurch; joint 3rd Jessica Zajac, hockey and netball teams, and Katie Brinkworth, county netball, hockey, shot put and discuss events.

# Best boy 8-11: 1st Stephan O'Donovan, Boys and Girls Clubs of Wales 40kg champion; 2nd Dean Maynard, Cardiff City Football Club Centre of Excellence; 3rd Jack Tugwell, footba

er.

# Best boy 12-16: 1st Abdi Ahmed, county level footballer who has turned down offers of academy forms with Manchester United and Blackburn Rovers to continue academic studies; 2nd Kurt Taylor, gold medal winner at the Boys and Girls Clubs of Wales National Athletics Championships; 3rd Scott Hillman, football at county level and trials for Blackburn Rovers and Birmingham City.

# Coach of the Year: 1st Phil Rees, Hywel Dda Junior School and county under 14s and under 11s football teams; 2nd Denise Morgan, who has run an after school gymnastics club for 15 years; 3rd David James, Huskies Sledge Hockey Team coach for seven years.

# Volunteer of the Year: 1st Sandra Jones, treasurer with the Cardiff Cheetahs Athletic Club; 2nd Brian Jones, who has been a volunteer at local, county and national sporting events for 20 years; 3rd Mark Merrett, volunteer with Cardiff Council's Sports Development Team.

# Outstanding achievement awards: Team award - Cardiff Cheetahs Athletic Club; Individual award - Nathan Stephens, who lost his legs in a childhood accident but has become the youngest member to represent Britain at sledge hockey.

CAPTION(S):

TEAM-MATES Best team aged 8-11, 1st Hywel Dda Junior School football team.; OUTSTANDING ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS Team award - Cardiff Cheetahs Athletic Club.; WINNER Nathan Stehens of Cardiff Sledge Hockey Club with Russell Goodway and the Lord Mayor's Outstanding Achievement award.; BEST GIRL 12-16 First place was Katie Daley, junior and senior Welsh football.; BEST BOY 12-16 First place Abdi Ahmed, county level footballer.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:South Wales Echo (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Nov 2, 2002
Words:746
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