The 2016 Liquid Sports Ghana Athlete of the Year Awards is brought to you by Liquid Sports Ghana in partnership with Ethiopian Airlines, the Ghana Triathlon Federation, the Sports Directorate-University of Ghana, Legon.
The second edition of the awards is sponsored by Kwese Free Sports, GTV Sports + and TV Africa.
1 x Commonwealth Games Silver medallist
1 x All-African Games Silver medallist
2 x African Championships Silver medallist
1 x African Championships Bronze medallist
1 x In Top 8 at World Junior Championships
1 x In Top 8 at All-African Games
5 x In Top 8 at African Championships
With less than two weeks to the most anticipated Liquid Sports Ghana Athlete of the Year Awards, we profile one of the nominees for the women’s athlete of the award: sprinter Janet Amponsah.
When world athletics governing body, the IAAF, confirmed Janet Amponsah’s qualification to the Rio 2016 Olympics women’s 200m in early July, 2016, it was a crowning moment for the Ghanaian sprint queen who had worked hard to achieve national and international prominence over the years.
This was a significant feat for the national sprint icon who has run the anchor leg for the national 4x100m relay team at several international competitions including winning silver at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and silver at the 2015 All Africa Games in Congo-Brazzaville, among others.
Janet achieved the Olympic qualifying standard with a blistering personal best 22.99s at the Soga-Nana Memorial meet at the Cape Coast stadium on Friday.
The U.S.A. based athlete who was listed on the IAAF’s official website as having qualified for the Olympics, was ranked 47th by www.road-to-rio.com
Janet’s new PB was an improvement over the 23.05s she recorded in 2015 and also an automatic qualifier for the Olympics, having met the 23.20s Olympic standard set by the IAAF.
In 2015, she was the only qualified Ghanaian sprinter who qualified for the 2015 IAAF World Championships in Beijing after running 11.29s ad 23.05 in the 100m and 200m respectively.
Janet joined fellow 11 fellow Ghanaian qualifiers for Rio 2016. They included Sean Safo Antwi (100m), Alex Amankwah (800m), Flings Owusu-Agyapong (100m), Emmanuel Dasor (200m), John Ampomah (javelin) and the women’s 4x100m relay team.
Janet is one of the athletes who came through the GAA’s Youth Develop program in 2012. Sponsored by the Maria Tsakos Foundation in Greece, the GAA rolled out an ambitious youth program which culminated in the hosting of the national junior championships in Tamale.
Several of the national stars who competed at the event were promoted to the national team and participated in the 18th African Seniors Athletics Championships in Cotonou, Benin.
In an unprecedented move, the GAA secured student-athlete scholarships for 13 national junior athletes to attend colleges and universities in the USA in 2014. Over 30 more national athletes, including Janet Amponsah, have benefited from the initiative to date.