There was great enthusiasm on Sunday morning when team South Africa finally left for the 9th All Africa Games in Algeria, from OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg.
After being delayed by 24 hours, the various teams were all ready and eager for the chartered plane to take off, and for the tournament to start.
The atmosphere among the athletes was rather peaceful, and they seemed to be handling the pressure of going into competition against the continent’s best.
One could sense from both the administrators and the athletes that there was an enormous amount of excitement and eagerness to represent South Africa, and to keep the flag flying high.
Even though they were slightly behind schedule, the attitude was very positive among the South African contingent, who seemed tremendously focused, grasping what was expected of them in Algeria.
It is widely anticipated that team South Africa will do very well at this year’s event, as previous competitions brought about various positive results.
SASCOC and the rest of the South African sports community are hoping they can build on that momentum with an eager eye on the Beijing Olympics, not too far off.
The conditions and climate is a factor of concern, especially with South Africa being in the middle of winter, but it appears that the team is willing and able to adjust.
Even though it is scorching hot in Algeria, the athletes are aiming to improve on their last performance at the games, and hopefully emerge once again as the best that Africa has to offer.