NEWPORT'S Elliot Donald has been nominated for an honour at next month's UK Coaching Awards.

Donald is a finalist in the children and young people's coach of the year category for his role as a special educational needs teacher and football coach.

He has seen participation numbers in the girls' school football team more than treble from 15 to between 50 and 60 regular participants.

Donald has also been responsible for creating social groups aimed at supporting children that lack confidence and struggle with social connections.

"I was really taken aback with the nomination," he said. "After coaching and teaching for so many years you understand that you have an impact on the children and you get a few comments from parents who are really generous with their praise.

"But for people to take the time to write in to nominate me takes it to a whole new level. It was quite a surprise when I received the notification and I felt quite emotional about it actually.

"I work with fantastic people and this recognition is for us as a collective.

"That includes the young volunteers, and of course the children who are the real superstars."

The awards take place at The Tower Hotel in London on December 5.

Donald is joined on the awards shortlist by Wales' senior men's hockey Head Coach Zak Jones, who is nominated for high performance coach of the year.

Tennis coach Jonathon Dawes, from Rhyl, is nominated as young coach of the year.

As a committed ambassador for walking netball, Cardiff's Siân Ponting is up for community coach of the year.

In the coaching for an active life category is The Bulldogs – a partnership run by Bulldogs Boxing & Community Activities and Port Talbot Amateur Boxing Club.