Judoka honoured at Combined Services Sports Awards

The best of the best in Services sports gathered for the Combined Services Sports Awards on the 7th March at the Royal Air Force Club in Piccadilly.

Dressed in parade uniforms rather than sports kits Trooper and Olympian Emmanuel Nartey along with Lance Corporal Lewis Keeble and the pair were joined by Captain and London 2012 Olympic gold medallist rower Heather Stanning.

Proudly supported by friends, family, senior officers and colleagues the judo world also had Squadron Leader Sami Smithson, Major Dave Campey and Warrant Officer Class 2 Dusty Miller amongst the guests. 

With Captain Heather Stanning named as the winner of the Combined Services Sports Woman of the year title, the focus then shifted to the men’s award with both Lewis and Emmanuel in the running as their respective Services Sportsmen of the year. 

As the first ever judoka to represent Ghana at the Olympics and having qualified in his own right, Emmanuel came out as the winner with Lewis a very close second after a fantastic year which saw him climb the world rankings with his first World Cup medal in Argentina. 

Squadron Leader Sami Smithson, Chair of Combined Services Judo said  “During my Services and Sporting career there are not many days that top how proud I was to see Emmanuel and Lewis stood together getting formal recognition for their efforts on the judo mat and also to the Service.

“Judo was the one sport heavily represented on the day, this just shows how strong partnerships can work together to get good athletes, great careers and long term success. Well done to both Lewis and Emmanuel, 2012 was a great year for both of them and I am sure there is much more to come in the future.”