today announced the names of the male and female athletes who have been shortlisted for the 2013 Belgian Sports Awards. Amongst the candidates are WAFEL athletes Nafi Thiam (heptathlon) and Thomas Van der Plaetsen (decathlon).

Thiam who is in contention for the 2013 Rising Star of the Year Award broke the  indoor world junior record in the pentathlon, was crowned European Junior Champion in the heptathlon, setting a national senior record in the process. She placed 14th in the heptathlon at the World Championships in Moscow and concluded the 2012-2013 athletics season ranked as the #1 junior in the world.

After winning the Rising Star of the Year Award in 2011, Van der Plaetsen has now been shortlisted for the Male Athlete of the Year Award. Van der Plaetsen, still just turning 23 in December, was the World University Games Champion in the decathlon and placed 15th at the World Championships in a PB mark of 8255.

An e-mail poll involving the Belgian accredited professional journalists begins on Thursday November 7th and will close on Thursday afternoon November 14th. At the conclusion of the voting process five (Male AOY and Female AOY) and three finalists (Rising Star of the Year) will be selected with the announcement of the winners taking place live on stage during the 2013 Sportgala on Sunday 22 December 2013.