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Mali making progress

Athletics can be the number one sport in South Africa if properly administrated, is the view of Ray Mali, interim head of Athletics South Africa’s (ASA) board.

Sapa reports that speaking at the launch of the 2010 Yellow Pages athletics series in Johannesburg on Tuesday, Mali said he was confident ASA was back on the right track and would be ready for a newly elected board when his tenure was over.

“Athletics can be the number one sport if properly managed for the benefit of athletics and not administrators.

“My term as head of the interim board ends on May 21 and I’m confident will have completed my work with the team and paved the way for fresh elections for a permanent board.”

It was clear that no one has been happy with the way athletics in South Africa has been run over the last few years, but Mali foresaw a rosy future.

“Unless we turn our sport into a truly professional setup run by professionals, I will have missed my goal,” the gently-spoken Mali concluded.

The sponsors confirmed they too have more confidence in the future and did not yield lightly when making their decision to renew their investment.

Managing director of Trudon, Thabo Seopa, said their decision to continue sponsoring athletics, to the tune of R20 million over the next three years, was only made after some major issues were addressed.

“We had to agree on a technical plan and we insisted all six of the meetings have to comply with IAAF standards,” said Seopa.

“ASA will also ensure there is a good representation of “A” standard athletes competing on each occasion.

“And, of course, the public is very important to us. To this end, we have an agreement with the national broadcaster that both the Junior and Senior Track and Field Championships will be live on television.”

Highlights of the six-meeting series will also be televised on the night which is one of the reasons some of the meetings will be held on different nights of the week, away from the tradition of all the meetings falling on a Friday night.

Yellow Pages have once again come to the party with bigger athlete incentives. There will be a female and male “Athlete of the Meet” worth R15 000 apiece, as well as a female and male athlete award at the Senior Champs, worth R30 000 each, and the ultimate prize of R100 000 each for the female and male athletes of the season.

To qualify for the grand prize, athletes will have had to participate in at least three series meetings and in the senior champs.

The series will be used to prepare athletes for the Commonwealth Games in India in October and lay the foundation for the team to participate at the 2012 Olympics in London.

Yellow Pages 2010 Series meetings: Friday, Feb 19 – Port Elizabeth Friday, Feb 26 – Durban Thursday, March 4 – Potchefstroom Wednesday, March 24 – Johannesburg Tuesday March 30 – Stellenbosch Tuesday April 6 – Tshwane

The Track and Field Senior Championships will be held in Durban on March 20-21 while the Youth and Junior Champsionships will be held in Johannesburg on April 10-11.


2 comments
Mark Etheridge
Mark Etheridge

Thanx Junior. I can confirm that the SA Seniors are on March 20-21 and the juniors on 10-11 April, in both cases it's a Saturday and Sunday. I think the ASA dates were old provisional fixtures that needed updating!

Junior
Junior

Hi You are saying SA Seniors March 20 -21 and ASA website the following: YELLOW PAGES SA SENIOR TRACK & FIELD CHAMPIONSHIPS Event Series: Track and Field Date: 19 March 2010 08:00 AM SA Juniors April 10-11, ASA website:YELLOW PAGES SA YOUTH & JUNIOR T & F CHAMPIONSHIPS Event Series: Track and Field Date: 09 April 2010 08:00 AM CAN WE HAVE THE CORRECT DATES PLEASE!!!!