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Double Paralympic Champion and Toyota brand Ambassador Ntando Mahlangu was among the Ministry of Sport’s crème de la crème awarded for excellence in their respective fields. Mahlangu, Olympic 200m Breaststroke Champion Tatjana Schoenmaker and Olympic Surfing silver medalist Bianca Buitendag (another Toyota brand Ambassador) were all presented with the Jove Shield – an award bestowed to the most prolific and deserving athletes who represented SA at the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The SA Sports Awards were held at the International Convention Centre in Durban (KZN) on 12 March 2022. The event celebrated athletes and officials who excelled on the international stage as well as journalists who did the country proud across media platforms. The awards covered 16 categories, including the Sport Star of the Year as well as People’s Athlete of the Year.
Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) is proud to have hosted some of the talents recognised at the Sports Awards. Last year, TSAM rewarded all the SA Olympic and Paralympic podium finishers from the Tokyo Games 2020 with cheques ranging from R25 000 to R200 000 per person. Mahlangu, Schoenmaker, Buitendag, Pieter du Preez, Anruné Weyers, Louzanne Coetzee and Sheryl James were all honoured by TSAM for their commendable showing at the Games last year.
TSAM would also like to congratulate Weyers and Du Preez for winning Sportswoman and Sportsman of the Year with a Disability, respectively. TSAM is particularly proud of the duo due to its association with the South African Sports Association for the Physically Disabled (SASAPD). The partnership has seen Toyota donate two minibuses to deserving SASAPD-affiliated schools thus far.
Earlier, when accepting her award, Buitendag said: “I am extremely grateful and humbled to receive this Shield of Jove, especially amongst the athletes who have recently broke world records and won gold. We have such immense grit, talent and character in our beloved country, and I hope to play my part in its development.”
Mahlangu concluded that: “I am grateful and extremely proud of being a recipient of the Shield of Jove award. Thank you to Minister Nathi Mthethwa, the Department of Sport, Arts and Culture and SASCOC for this huge honour. I am humbled to be included among the country’s top sportsmen and women making South Africa proud and look forward to continuing the legacy of being an example of what is possible through sport. Thank you, Toyota South Africa for supporting me to start my impossible.”