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Van Niekerk leads SA as Rio Games are officially opened

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL. 4 AUGUST 2016. Wayde van Niekerk leades Team South Africa into the Maracana Stadium during the Opening Ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games this evening.


Copyright picture by WESSEL OOSTHUIZEN / SASPA

South Africa’s world champion 400-metre athlete Wayde van Niekerk got things going for the rainbow nation as the 2016 Rio Olympics were officially opened at the Maracana Stadium on Friday night.
The first time Olympian waved the South African flag proudly in front of a full-house of joyous spectators as SA were the third team into the stadium after Games founders Greece and Afghanistan.
Close to 210 teams got to strut their stuff at the opening ceremony before the Games officially swung into action on Saturday.
South Africa’s men’s and women’s footballers were the first code in action earlier in the week and Saturday sees men’s cycling, gymnastics, rowing, swimming and more football taking place around the city.
The capacity crowd was entertained by some superbly choreographed local Brazilian samba dances with a strong theme on conservation and preservation of the globe.
After a build-up marred by various disruption, the professionalism of the opening ceremony bodes well for what is expected to be a spectacular Games, the seventh time South Africa will be competing since re-admission to world sport and their first Olympics back in Barcelona in 1992.
The men’s road race with Daryl Impey and Louis Meintjes is the first SA code in action on Saturday.

Picture courtesy of Wessel Oosthuizen/SASPA


8 comments
Basil Molotlegi
Basil Molotlegi

Oh my goodness! They look like a miserable 1989 disaster. Never let our sportsmen walk into events like these wearing tracksuits. At least get them to wear a simple black suit and a white shirt if you must. And by the way, don't think we are not watching... You did the same at London 2012. Tracksuits at opening ceremonies are not on!!!

Mickey J Wild
Mickey J Wild

ANC took opening ceremony clothing money to pay for failed elections. What a shame. They would have looked better in lion skin like old worriors. The future is near change has started. Good luck the the athletes it's all about you not the free riders send by the ANC to eat all the food.

Mpho Madi
Mpho Madi

Opening ceremony wearing tracksuits\U0001f622\U0001f622\U0001f622

Mpho Madi
Mpho Madi

Maybe if you a sports person you will understand. All opening ceremonies we have special clothes for it, just wondering what changed.