President's Voice – Gideon Sam | SASCOC - SASCOC

President’s Voice – Gideon Sam

It’s been a particularly busy time at Olympic House, with the Queen’s Baton Tour having spent five days in South African, showcasing and publicising the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia.

Meanwhile, the high performance commission has finalised the broad framework to prepare Team SA for the upcoming competitions in which the county will be participating.

The next step for this commission is to identify the pockets of resources to put behind the various programmes designed by the coaches and technical teams. To understand this better, here is a glimpse of the work being done:

We now know how to use the pool of experts available in the country. Through networking, these experts feed information into a central point at SASCOC, which in turn is fed to the athletes via the coaches.

The next step is to align the pockets of resources with the programmes designed by the individual coaches.

No deserving athlete should fall outside this distribution of the available resources if the national federations  take note of what the high performance commission is putting together.

We know that the national lotteries commission remains our major funder, and this will continue ensuring that the OPEX programme remains intact.

OPEX athletes signing agreements with SASCOC, and who continue to deliver on the set performance programmes, are guaranteed support in the current Olympic cycle.

Furthermore, funds from the association of national Olympic committees of Africa (ANOCA), will also be available for national Olympic committees to tap into.

The key to tapping into all these pockets of resources is to know where they are and what is required to get them. The high performance commission is mapping that plan to make sure that all the available resources are fully utilised.

This means that the likes of our Olympic medal-winners are still assured of funding, as well as the next wave of future stars.

Despite hard economic times, our athletes still continue to shine! The Blitzboks have wrapped up the HSBC World Sevens Series and there can be few more deserving cases. This is a team that ticks all the boxes and the nation is hugely proud of them!

Our triathletes are also continuing their fine form and getting on to podiums around the world, while I see our sprint canoeists are ever-improving on the world cup scene in Europe.

The Amajita U20 side haven’t managed to win a game yet in the world cup in South Korea, but have put up a good fight and are certainly deserving of their place in the global soccer showpiece.

Finally, I must also say that the Arnold Classic held in Johannesburg was a resounding success, and continues to be a brilliant way of showing off so many sporting codes to the nation, attracting new interest and talent.