CAPE TOWN – A golden Protea is at the forefront of the Team South Africa kit for the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The kit, sponsored by Mr Price Sport and VeldskoenTM, was unveiled at the Durban ICC on Thursday, with a number of athletes past and present – including Khotso Mokoena, Bridgitte Hartley, Anaso Jobodwana and Erin Gallagher – also part of the “fashion show” styled event.

Four up-and-coming designers from Durban were chosen to come up with the look, which resulted in a big Protea in gold on a green background.

There were also various other casual-wear items such as tracksuits and T-shirts, as well as match kits in green, white and grey colours for the competitions, opening and closing ceremonies and leisure time.

The four designers’ brief was to “create a first look that’s so memorable, so outstanding, that all eyes would be on our athletes; to create an authentic South African kit that fellow competing countries would want to wear themselves”.

“(All the sponsors) are becoming a big family who have shown that we are committed to supporting our athletes… and to showcase South Africa as one of the best in the world,” Sascoc president Barry Hendricks said.

“It is about how comfortable the athletes feel when they run out and represent their country, wearing the clothes that we are showcasing today.

“Hopefully (this event), the people that are watching this show are the young aspiring athletes – the young boys and girls – who will feel that one day, they will want to walk on this catwalk and display the clothing that they are going to wear at the Olympics and Paralympics, Commonwealth Games, and the rest.

“It’s wonderful for Team SA to be able to showcase the incredible talent of these four young designers on the biggest sports stage of all.

“We are thankful for the opportunity to put their work on the global map. Our Team SA athletes will wear the kit with pride, and the way they look and dress will be eye-catching to the rest of the competing nations.”

The Olympics start on July 23 and end on August 8, with the Paralympics set to kick off on August 24, ending on September 5.

@ashfakmohamed

IOL Sport