Team South Africa’s victorious 2018 Commonwealth Games athletes were honoured at a Champions Parade in Pretoria on Monday.
South Africa’s athletes had a hugely successful Commonwealth Games campaign in Gold Coast, Australia, winning 37 medals and ending sixth on the medals table, one place higher than at the last Games in Glasgow, Scotland four years ago.
The official welcoming parade for the medallists got off to a start at Burgers Park, Pretoria and came to a conclusion at the CSIR International Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Along the route were stops at Sammy Marks Mall on Madiba Street, Bosman Station, as well as the Sunny Park Mall where athletes were greeted by supporters and heralded by a brass band.
Throngs of excited sports fans cheered the team’s passing and got to mingle with the Team SA medallists.
The main welcoming function was hosted by the CSIR International Convention and Exhibition Centre, Pretoria.
Among the speakers were SASCOC President Gideon Sam, Sports Minister Tokozile Xasa and chairperson of the National Lotteries Commission, Mr Alfred Nevhutanda.
Many of the medal-winners from Australia were in attendance, among them multiple medallists Chad le Clos and Tatjana Schoenmaker (swimming) and Caster Semenya (track) as well as gold medallists Luvo Manyonga (long jump) and Martin Erasmus (wrestling).
Medal-winning athletes and their coaches in attendance were presented with their handsome financial incentives, as promised by SASCOC prior to the games.
The team won 13 gold, 11silver and 13 bronze medals in Gold Coast.
The medal incentives were as follows:
Gold – R50,000 for the athlete and R12.500 for athlete’s coach
Silver – R25,000 for the athlete and R7500 for athlete’s coach
Bronze – R15,000 for the athlete and R5000 for athlete’s coach
Photo: double gold track medallist Semenya at Monday’s medal parade as well as double gold swimming medallist Tatjana Schoenmaker with Sports Minister Tokozile Xasa and SASCOC President Gideon Sam, by Wessel Oosthuizen/Gallo Images