Eleven athletes have been nominated for the 2023 Women's World Athlete of the Year title [Image WA]

Gudaf Tsegay, Tigist Assefa up for World Athlete of the Year Award

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia’s Gudaf Tsegay and Tigist Assefa have been nominated for the 2023 Women’s World Athlete of the Year.

The sport’s governing body World Athletics confirmed a list of 11 nominees ahead of the World Athletics Awards 2023.

“These athletes were selected by an international panel of athletics experts, comprising representatives from all six continental areas of World Athletics,” the WA announced.

The nominations reflect some of the standout performances achieved at the World Athletics Championships Budapest 23, one-day meeting circuits, and Label road races, among other events.

Both the nominees from Ethiopia ended the season on high notes with each breaking major world records on the global stage.

Late last month, Tigst successfully defended her BMW Berlin Marathon title in style, smashing the world record with 2:11:53.

The 26-year-old took more than two minutes off the women’s world record of 2:14:04, which had been set by Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei at the 2019 Chicago Marathon.

Her compatriot Gudaf also ended the season on a high note.

The 26-year-old grabbed the 10,000m World Champion title at the world athletics championships in Budapest and went on to obliterate the world 5000m record at the Diamond League in Eugene last month.

Gudaf took almost five seconds off the world record of 14:05.20 that Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon set in Paris in June.

Tigist and Gudaf will face strong competition from the World 1500m and 5000m champion Kipyegon and Spain’s World 20km and 35km race walk world champion Maria Perez.

The 11-nominee list also includes Femke Bol (Netherlands), Shericka Jackson (Jamaica), Haruka Kitaguchi (Japan) Yaroslava Mahuchikh (Ukraine), Sha’Carri Richardson (USA), and Yulimar Rojas (Venezuela).

Three-way voting process

The World Athletics Council will first determine the finalists through a three-way voting process. Its Council’s vote will count for 50% of the result, while the World Athletics Family’s votes and the public votes will each count for 25% of the final result.

Individual graphics for each nominee will be posted on Facebook, X, Instagram, and YouTube this week; a ‘like’ on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube or a retweet on X will count as one vote.

Fans have until midnight on Saturday 28 October midnight to cast their votes with the five finalists are scheduled to announced by World Athletics on 13-14 November.

The winners of both women and men athlete of the year will be revealed on 11 December.