Bobby Bhogal is coach of the year

[img_assist|nid=1200|title=|desc=Bobby Bhogal winner of the Coach of the Year Award at the Lebara British Asian Sports Awards. Image courtesy of ZAREKR.COM|link=popup|align=left|width=320|height=213]Hockey coach Bobby Bhogal, from Leeds, was crowned coach of the year at the Lebara British Asian Sports Awards (BASA) on Saturday.

Bobby said: “It’s just amazing. This is a huge honour for me to be named coach of the year, especially with two other strong contenders also in the category. It was unreal to hear my name being called out as the winner in front of a star-studded audience. It was a special moment for me.”

The competition in the coaching category came from Preston-based martial arts coach, Hashmat Faqiri, and popular women’s cricket coach, Salma Bi, 24, from Birmingham.

Bobby added: “A lot this success is down to my daughter Ashpal who has been an inspirational student, role model and she has the drive to continue to achieve and represent at the highest level possible.”

Ashpal, who last year became the first female hockey player of South Asian descent to represent England at any level, was nominated for an award in the young sports personality of the year (U18 female) category.

The glittering event, which took place at the Grosvenor House Hotel, Park Lane, London, celebrated its tenth anniversary in style with dignitaries from the sporting and showbiz world in attendance to show their support.

Bobby was shortlisted for an award from hundreds of hopefuls across the categories. The shortlist was compiled by BASA’s world-class juding panel including former England cricketer Mark Ramprakash, Olympic Gold medallist, Denise Lewis (OBE) and BBC’s Football League Show presenter, Manish Bhasin.

Bobby, an England Masters hockey player, is the only Asian coach in the u15/17s women’s high performance centre and a lead coach on the England Hockey single system.  

He has already been identified as one of the key figures at next year’s Masters World Cup in Singapore, and the planned Olympic Masters Tournament at London 2012. As well as holding a successful coaching career, Bobby has been selected to play for the England Masters team in the Four Nations plus tournament in Ireland. 

The full winners list can be found online at www.basauk.tv