Eastern Cape spends R2,9m on team

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

Ramatsiyi Moholoa

The Eastern Cape government has invested R2,9 million in their provincial team to the South African Games in Bloemfontein from September 24 to 28.

Part of the money has been used for training camps, medical tests, playing equipment, transport, meals and accommodation.

The team was selected at the provincial championships at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth last year.

Noxolo Abrahams-Ntandiso, MEC of the department of sport and recreation, said the selected athletes underwent intensive training at the Eastern Cape Academy of Sport.

"The academy did not only take the athletes through their paces but also focused on psychological and nutrition programmes to ensure that they are prepared mentally and physically," she said.

Abrahams-Ntandiso said they were looking forward to improving on the third position they obtained in the past three championships.

The team will assemble in Aliwal North on Saturday where Abrahams-Ntandiso will hand provincial colours to the athletes and officials.

In Gauteng, Barbara Creecy, MEC of sports, arts, culture and recreation, will deliver a keynote address at the send-off function for Team Gauteng in Tshwane on Saturday night.

Nomazwe Ntlokwana, the department's communications director, said the event will take place at Utopia Place in Lynn- wood.

"We have always done well as Gauteng at the South African Games, for us the event has helped to unearth talent in our province.

"Top athletes who participated in the tournament include Thabang Moeketsane, Thandi Mngwevu, Stephen Mokoka, Violet Raseboya and Nthabiseng Nyambose," said Ntlokwana.

Mokoka, Mngwevu and Raseboya are doing well in athletics, Moeketsane is a top swimmer, while Nyambose is doing duty for Banyana Banyana.

The Free State government and City of Mangaung plan to use the games to showcase their readiness for the 2010 World Cup.