FIBA Africa Zone Five Most Valuable Player (MVP) Victoria Reynolds is the LG and SJAK (Sports Journalists Association of Kenya) Sports Personality of the Month for July, 2021.
The recognition follows Victoria’s performance at the Zone Five Afrobasket qualifiers held on 12th to 17th July, 2021. At the games, Vitoria was able to help the national women’s basketball team, Kenya Lionesses, clinch the zonal title, qualifying them for the Women’s Afrobasket to be held on 17th to 26th September, 2021.
Making her debut for Kenya Lionesses and playing in the zonal competition for the first time, Reynolds, a Master’s Degree scholar in the United States helped Lionesses to win against Egypt by 99-83 in the final.
Lionesses faced Rwanda in their opening match, going down 77-45. Reynolds stayed 12.51 minutes on the floor to score five points, in the only match she failed to hit double digits in points.
The Kenyan women bounced back to pick their first win against South Sudan in a 66-48 score line, with Reynolds managing a double-double with 12 points, 10 rebounds, and 36 minutes of play.
Up against Egypt in the final group-stage match, the 24-year old scored 25 points, five rebounds and four steals, in 37 minutes of play time, as Lionesses gave up a 25-point lead at half time to lose 107-106 to the North Africans.
In the semifinal where Lionesses played against Rwanda, the team went hard for a 79-52 victory as Reynolds scored 16 points, rebounded six times and had three steals.
Reynolds beat two-time Olympics gold medalist Faith Kipyegon who in July clocked a 3:51.07 world lead at the Monaco Diamond League to the award.
Other nominees included Africa Rally Championship (ARC) leader Carl Tundo who won five out ten stages of the Tanzania Rally and sprint sensation Ferdinand Omanyala.
Reynolds joins the growing list of the monthly LG/SJAK winners that includes
- Tennis superstar Angela Okutoyi (January)
- Basketballer Tylor Okari Ongwae of Kenya Moran’s (February)
- Boxer Elly Ajowi (March)
- Reigning world marathon champion Ruth Chepng’etich (April)
- Milan marathon winner Titus Ekiru (May)
- WRC Safari Rally WRC3 winner Onkar Rai (June)
LG Electronics Home Appliances Product Marketer, Ms. Tabitha Wairimu hailed Reynolds for her contribution to the success of the Kenya Lionesses, describing her as a promising basketball star to watch. She thanked SJAK and the media for their role in highlighting the achievements of Kenyan sportsmen and women.
On his part, SJAK President Chris Mbaisi, thanked LG Electronics for their unwavering support saying the partnership continues to make a huge difference in the promotion of sporting activities across the country.
Reynolds will receive a number of awards including an LG refrigerator retailing at Ksh. 72,495.