The announcement, which comes just ahead of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland, was made at a press conference held in Johannesburg, where both SAA and SASCOC signed the official contract.
SAA spokesperson, Tlali Tlali says: “SAA’s partnership with SASCOC shows our commitment towards promoting South Africa’s professional sporting heroes. As the national flag carrier, we are proud to be associated with this national initiative and our pledge serves as a contribution to ensure that our country is able to showcase its talent on an international stage”.
The three-year sponsorship is in the form of air tickets, which enables participating athletes and officials to fly to various sports destinations in the 2014-2016 period leading up to the Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games. This will greatly assist in the preparation and delivery of Team SA to various international events.
Speaking at the event, SASCOC president Gideon Sam expressed his gratitude for SAA’s coming on board: “The issue of travel is always a vital part of our planning and strategy here at SASCOC. In the modern world it’s hugely expensive to get to various events around the world and this generous gesture will enable our athletes to test themselves against the very best in the world.
Added SASCOC Acting CEO, Vinesh Maharaj: “We once again express our sincere gratitude to SAA for their magnanimous support. Our athletes will travel in comfort and style, all the more reason for them to perform well at the various international games.
“Our sponsors go a long way to ensure that the team performs to the best of their ability. SAA will issue air tickets to athletes and officials both during team preparation and delivery hence all we need from our athletes is their utmost effort to work hard and bring home more medals for the country.
“In our preparation leading up to Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we urge athletes to utilise all opportunities that come their way and make our sponsors proud by remaining on course and performing to the best of their abilities.”