THE HAGUE – During a festive evening in the Sportcampus Zuiderpark, which has been transformed into a festive site, the great sporting achievements of the past year and the fun in sport were celebrated. This past Monday, December 19, the Sports of the Year awards were given to female athlete, athlete, team, coach, talent, and referee. The dazzling show was hosted by Jessica Mendels and Gregory Seduc. The winners were all present and proudly receiving their awards.
The winners of The Hague Sports Gala 2022:
The best female athlete of the year was Stevie van der Peet. This young cyclist was at his best last year. The most important achievements before her candidacy were the bronze of the World Cup and the silver of the European Championships, but even after announcing her candidacy she continued to win important awards, including two golds in the Champions League in the Kirin division.
Thomas Verheidt was named Sportsman of the Year. The 30-year-old vice-captain is the all-time leading goalscorer since ADO Den Haag has played professional football, with 30 goals in the competition. A great example for many football boys and girls from The Hague. In the presence of a number of his colleagues, friends and family, he proudly received his award.
The Sports Team of the Year award went to the Hijs Hokij ice hockey men. Hijs Hokij is the oldest and currently the most successful ice hockey club in the Netherlands. Last year they won the Dutch Championship (BeNeLeague), the Cup and the Super Cup. Reason enough to name the Sports Team of the Year.
Multi-athlete Gabriel Emmanuel won the Talent of the Year award. He was also nominated last year, but his performance this year again did not lie. He won the decathlon world title for athletes under the age of 20 with gold in the hurdles and discus throw. Gabriel will go to America next year to develop his athletic talent there.
She has won three times before. Sarina Wiegmann has once again won the Coach of the Year award. After the unfortunate Olympics with the Orange Lioness, she switched to the England national team. And with success! In addition to winning the European Championship with this team, she was also named UEFA Women’s Coach of the Year 2021-2022. A well-deserved Coach of the Year winner for someone who means a lot to women’s football.
The Hague Heroes
There are many great achievements in 2022 that The Hague is rightfully proud of. No wonder, then, that once a year the Hague champions are put in the spotlight at the Haags Sportgala. Those athletes from The Hague who individually or as a team managed to win a national title were present in droves and opened the Sports Gala with an impressive display of their association’s flags.
Alderman of Sports Hilbert Bredemeger: “Top athletes and champions are a powerful example for others to take up sports, especially if they come from your city! With their great accomplishments, they inspire others to get moving too.”
Judges Award and Richard Krajicek Award
To show how important it is for The Hague to consider referees and a positive sporting culture, the Referee of the Year award has been part of the Sports Gala since 2021. This year this award was won by Jan Block, a member of the HSK Trias cycling association in The Hague.
Also, just like last year, the Richard Krajicek Award was given out. In the run-up to the Sports Festival, several activities have been organized by Scholarshippers of the Krajeskek Foundation to move neighborhoods in The Hague literally and figuratively. The Richard Krajicek Award went to Mayar Massoud from Vermeerpark, because of the event in which amazing and innovative sports were presented to the children of the neighborhood.
Talent Crowdfunding Yvonne van Gennep Talent Fund
New this year is additional support for the three sports talents nominated for this year. The Hague Municipality is partnering with the Yvonne van Gennip talent fund. Part of the Yvonne van Gennip Talent Fund is The Hague Talent Book. This provides talented athletes up to the age of 24 with the opportunity to gain additional resources through crowdfunding. Talented athletes from The Hague can create a profile at www.talentboek.nl and indicate what they need to achieve their ambitions.
They can get donations for this. During the Sports Gala, the Municipality of The Hague donated €500 to Sports Talent of the Year winner Gabriel Emmanuel, judo nominee Joshua de Lange and freestyler Noa Diorgina Man, as the start of their campaign on Talentboek Den Haag. These amounts come from the Den Haag Topsport Support Fund. During the sports gala, the audience also donated live to the nominated talents.
The Hague, European Sports Capital
There was also a retrospective of The Hague as the European Capital of Sport. Alderman for Sport Hilbert Bredemeyer: “It was a great year in sport, with The Hague being the European capital for sport, and a year in which The Hague hosted a plethora of national and international events such as the Davis Cup, Invictus Games, World Youth Sailing Championships, NN CPC Loop and NK Beach Ball Volleyball, Town Games, NK Surf Tour, and much more!On to more beautiful things in 2023!
Half of the sports award winners were decided by the public, who voted online via a voting tool, and the other half by a professional jury.