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Thursday, May 30, 2024

Hooray! Springboks, Proteas can fly South African flag for now, says sports minister Zizi Kodwa

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Sports minister Zizi Kodwa announced on Tuesday that the department of sport will appeal Wada’s decision that could prevent the Springboks and Proteas from flying the South African flag, and singing the anthem ahead of their games at their respective World Cups.

According to Kodwa, the sanctions against South Africa will be on hold for now. This is due to the fact that the South African Institute of Drug-Free Sport (SAIDS) has made an urgent appeal to delay the possible ban.

“I believe the grounds for appeal are strong and the sanctions are not appropriate. The sanctions that pertain to the flying of the national flag have created unnecessary hysteria and are punishing athletes and players unfairly who are competing for the pride of our nation, South Africa,” the minister said on Tuesday.

“The appeal will stave off the consequences of non-compliance as it applies to the flying of South Africa’s flag at regional, continental, and world championships and any major events.”

“This means the national teams and athletes will be able to fly the South African flag at events like the Cricket and Rugby World Cup and will not be affected until CAS rules on this challenge.”

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The initial deadline to comply was October 13th,  a few days before the Springboks’s Rugby World Cup quarter-final against hosts France on Sunday.

The SA government reportedly failed to amend their anti-doping regulations to comply with the new World Anti-Doping Code, which came into force in 2021.

Siya Kolisi’s Bok take on hosts France in what is set to be a mammoth quarter-final clash on Sunday, while the Proteas will take on Australia on Thursday.

They began their campaign with a dominant win over Sri Lanka over the weekend.

@AliciaPillay

IOL Sport

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