Shujaa hero Patrick Odongo wins SJAK September award

SJAK Sports personality of the month Patrick Odongo at RFUEA grounds on October 11, 2023. [Courtesy]

Kenya rugby sevens winger Patrick Odongo has been named LG/SJAK Sports Personality of the Month of September.

The Daystar Falcons star was in a class of his own during the month of September as he managed seven tries during the Rugby Africa 7s event that also doubled up as a qualifier for the 2024 Pari Olympics. Shujaa went ahead to win the continental title and in the process qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Odongo who was Shujaa’s joint top scorer alongside John Okoth emerged the hero in the finals after touching down twice as Kenya beat South Africa 17-12 on September 17.

Despite his great displays on the pitch, Odongo, 19, was mourning his mother who had passed on, on September 9 just before the team traveled to Zimbabwe. The seven-try hero put on a brave face to don the Shujaa shirt for the first time ever and he did not disappoint.

For his achievement, Odongo was awarded an LG Top Freezer Refrigerator, retailing at Sh115,000.

It was the first time a rugby player was winning the LG/SJAK monthly award this year.

“This award is a huge motivation to me as I prepare with the national team for upcoming assignments. I could not imagine that I would be recognized and rewarded by LG and the Kenya sports journalists. I am thankful for the award and I promise to do better in my rugby career with the Olympics approaching,” Odongo said.

LG Electronics EA Managing Director Dong Won Lee lauded the youngster for his cameo performance in September.

“Odongo overcame various obstacles and hardships, demonstrating that with determination, hard work, and discipline in sports, one can achieve remarkable results.

“What’s even more impressive is that Odongo has followed in the footsteps of Aldrine Kibet, another young talent who won the August award. His success on the rugby pitch serves as an inspiration not only to young rugby players but also to the entire global sports community” Lee said.

SJAK president James Waindi said the country had high expectations for Odongo as he is expected to lead Shujaa’s quest at next year’s Paris Olympic Games.

“SJAK congratulates Patrick Odongo for winning the September Sports Personality of the Month award. We encourage you to continue inspiring the youth with your exceptional talent.

“As sports journalists, we will continue telling the stories of our sports personalities as they write history in local and international events. I would like to tell Odongo that Life’s Good with LG as we thank LG for the partnership that has seen sports personalities recognized and awarded every month over the years,” Waindi said.

Odongo beat Harambee Starlets goalkeeper Annedy Kundu, Ruth Ingotsi who helped Simba Queens win their third Tanzanian league title, Agnes Ngetich who set a new 10km women road race world record and Eliud Kipchoge who on the Berlin Marathon title. 

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