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Nabi wins top award

PUBLISHED

16:55 9th October 2013

Injured striker receives timely filip

ADIL Nabi last night received a timely fillip by being voted best Young Player at the Asian Football Awards 2013.

The 19-year-old striker, who is currently sidelined after suffering an anterior cruciate ligament knee injury in pre-season, picked up his trophy during a ceremony at Wembley Stadium.

Nabi was rewarded for his progress with a new two-year Albion deal, plus a further year’s option in the club’s favour, in July.

The Baggies Academy product top scored for the club in the Barclays Under-21 Premier League last season with eight goals.

He beat off competition from Malvind Benning (Walsall), Jhai Dhillon (Stevenage) and Josh Shama (Oxford United) for the award - sponsored by Sky Ex.

“I am quite overwhelmed, this is a great award to win," said Nabi. 

"I’ve seen so many inspirational people here so I am proud to win an award which means so much to Asian football.

"There is a great level of awareness of not only our Asian footballers but our communities and the many projects that take place. 

"There are some real unsung heroes here.

"My aims for the future are to break into the West Bromwich Albion first team, make my Premier League debut and score goals for the club."

Nabi’s younger brother and fellow Baggie, Samir, was nominated in the Up and Coming Player category.

The Asian Football Awards (AFA) aim to improve the awareness of the positive impact made by Asians within the UK football industry, and to engage with organisations and individuals to help increase participation levels.

AFA founder Baljit Rihal said: "I can proudly say that the Asian Football Awards has already encouraged more Asians to get involved in every aspect of the game, and will continue to do so. 

"Our vision remains to support the growth of UK Asians in football.

"Since our inaugural event last year, the support from across the industry has been astonishing, but we are not just concerned with increasing Asian participation on the field. 

"Our aim is also to help make the hierarchies of organisations that govern football more reflective of the society within which we live.”

The hosts for the awards evening were BBC Asian Network presenter Noreen Khan and Sky Sports News presenter Dharmesh Sheth, while the judging panel included representatives from The FA, The PFA and Kick It Out, as well as the chief executive officer of International Airlines Group, Willie Walsh, the BBC Sport presenter Manish Bhasin and Amit Bhatia, the vice-chairman of Queens Park Rangers.

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