Support for Wayde

2016-06-08 06:00
SOUTH AFRICAN and 400 m world champion Wayde van Niekerk (centre) signs a pair of running shoes to be kept in the memorabilia cabinet of the sponsor Defy and supporter Kloppers as part of the Defyning stet Memories Campaign unveiled in Bloemfontein on Wednesday, 25 May. With the star athlete are Grant Steyl (Kloppers) and Rox-ann Govender (Defy). Photo: Teboho Setena

SOUTH AFRICAN and 400 m world champion Wayde van Niekerk (centre) signs a pair of running shoes to be kept in the memorabilia cabinet of the sponsor Defy and supporter Kloppers as part of the Defyning stet Memories Campaign unveiled in Bloemfontein on Wednesday, 25 May. With the star athlete are Grant Steyl (Kloppers) and Rox-ann Govender (Defy). Photo: Teboho Setena

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IN the quest to build his legacy as a winner in short- and middle-
distance athletics, star athlete Wayde van Niekerk is delighted to received significant sponsorship from home-grown company Defy Appliances (Pty) Ltd. The official launch of the far-reaching deal was unveiled in Bloemfontein on Wednesday, 25 May, under the slogan “Defyning Memories”.

Rox-ann Govender of Defy said the decision to support Van Niekerk as ambassador had been taken with the strong desire to show that “home-grown products support home-grown talent”. Govender said the 200 m and 400 m star was the first ambassador of Southern Africa’s largest manufacturer and distributor of domestic appliances. The deal is for 12 months, with possibilities for extension, Govender said.

“The slogan ‘Defyning Memories’ is designed to capture the promising young athlete’s talent, as well as to highlight some of his ‘Defyning Memories’ leading up to his selection for the South African Olympic team,” said Cherisse Erwee, marketing manager of the sponsorship wing.

“Wayde has had numerous successes in his athletic career, many of which he’s achieved in a short space of time. Given these achievements, we wanted to bring to life the concept of ‘Defyning Memories’ to highlight those moments that have helped him get to where he is today, as well as those successes he may go on to achieve in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.

“True to the brand, we believe in better and hence believe Wayde will make strides and create greater ‘Defyning Memories’ at this year’s Summer Olympics,” said Erwee.

Van Niekerk’s first “Defyning” moment came in 2014, when he achieved a South African record of 44.38 at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in New York. In one of three occasions, he broke the 45 seconds barrier during the year. Since then, he has achieved his first-ever under 20 s. 200 m in Luzern, making him one of only four men in history to break both the 44 s. and 20 s.

The deal comes in time to bolster this 400 m IAAF world champion and South African 200 m and 400 m champion for his daunting 2016 Rio Olympics Games quest in Brazil.

A torchbearer for the youth, Van Niekerk has embraced it with delight, saying the support would propel him to unleash his very best in his quest to build a good legacy to showcase his God-given talent. “I’m grateful for being supported, receiving support and being associated with a home-grown product that values my talent. I dream of achieving big and the support I’m receiving gives me extra power to strive to realise the dream,” he said.

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