South African “hit and run” survivor thriving at sports since accident!

Delien Kleinhans South African "hit and run" survivor thriving at sports since accident!

From the operating table to award winner!


Nominated in two categories, rising tennis star Delien Kleinhans won the Girls Player of the Year award at the inaugural Tennis South Africa (TSA) Junior Awards Dinner, which took place in Potchefstroom on Sunday, 7 October 2018.

“I am incredibly proud of my achievement, though it felt unexpected!” says Kleinhans.

“I would like to express gratitude towards TSA for supporting me through a difficult year and giving me lots of opportunities to grow and perform to the best of my ability.”

During her acceptance speech, Kleinhans congratulated her fellow players on their achievements which have all come from their hard work and dedication.

“Work hard, be grateful and use your opportunities,” says Kleinhans. “If you do, winning takes care of itself.”

At the tender age of 16, Kleinhans is currently ranked the second highest South African, as well as 203 in the world in the under-18 International Tennis Federation. In September 2018, she received a Junior Sport Star award hosted by the Volksblad and University of the Free State.

It hasn’t, however, been the smoothest journey for the award-winning player. On 16 December 2017, Kleinhans was involved in a hit and run accident and she broke two bones in her ankle and underwent an operation whereby they inserted metal screws and plates to support her. During the four months of recovery and not being able to play tennis, Kleinhans kept fit by going to gym regularly. Having recovered in record time, she was chosen to represent South Africa in Tunisia and Algeria.

At first, she didn’t achieve her desired results, but she never gave up. Instead, she trained harder and kept herself motivated. Since June 2018, the young athlete has won two international single titles, and has participated in four international doubles finals. Her world ranking jumped from 450 to 203 this year.

“The road to recovery has been tough,” says Kleinhans, “However, I never lost motivation to strive for the best!”

Technical sponsor Lotto South Africa is proud to be affiliated with the rising tennis star. “Delien has been a true champion in her field and her constant drive to achieve spectacular results has been nothing short of inspiring,” says Gerrit van der Merwe, Brand Manager for Lotto South Africa.

Kleinhans did not only win the award but was also chosen for the TSA junior national squads for the 2018/19 tennis season, which was announced at the Awards Dinner on Sunday evening.

Sources: Delien Kleinhans
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and man in charge at Good Things Guy. Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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