Global market leader of the international express and logistics industry, DHL has shown support for Wheelchair Basketball South Africa (WBSA) by sponsoring the popular Eastern Cape Bears team, now known as the DHL Flyers. The DHL Flyers took part in the SuperSport Premier Wheelchair Basketball Series elite league which kicked off the season on 8th March playing against the Gestetner Pumas at the Mandeville Sports Social Club at 12h00.DHL has committed to sponsor and brand the DHL Flyers for 2008 by providing player kits for the 16 team members. The contract with DHL Flyers is for one year, but should the relationship prove to be successful, the contract will be extended for another two years. Front Row:Sabata Mphaki (10), Siphe Sozani (11), Lubabalo Ndzaba (8), Thulani Sipoyo (4) Middle Row: Lungile Mazibu (13), Luyanda Ntwalana (14),
Vuyani Dom (9), Mongameli Wana (12), Mgcini Mzileni (7), Mzwanele Thintsi (15), Thembani Mathu (5) Standing in the Back Row:Ayanda Langa (Manager), Lungu Wexu (6), Fatima Sullivan (Commercial Manager of DHL, South Africa), Ayanda Mabedla (Coach)“DHL is committed to the delivery of a better sporting South Africa. As a brand DHL stands for speed, reliability, power and dedication therefore our sponsorship of wheelchair basketball communicates our core strengths. DHL strongly believes that the backing of South African sports teams by corporate South Africa will ensure sustainable growth and development in our local sporting arena. We are proud to be associated with our DHL Flyers team and happy that we have this opportunity to show our support,” said Tom Plummer, Managing Director, DHL South Africa.The SuperSport Premier Wheelchair Basketball Series comprises of the country’s top eighty players, top eight coaches as well as management, staff and top eight clubs based on a franchised club league. The series is used as a platform for national coaching managers and selectors to recruit U 23 and national athletes for the progression of national teams. The DHL sponsorship has provided a major boost to the Eastern Cape players’ morale as, up until now, the self-funded team had to make do with very little budget over the years, reliant on government handouts and fundraising. The DHL Flyers look set to better their 2007 result of sixth position overall. “All investment towards the sport is for the betterment of the disabled plight. DHL have assisted in bringing the DHL Flyers team into the real world of sponsored sport. The franchise can now cater for all disabled wheelchair basketball athletes in the Eastern Cape and has opened doors for young athletes to grow into the sport. Five years ago WBSA had embarked on a campaign to have its elite structure sponsored in order for the National teams to have accessibility to all talent from all sectors of the country. Having companies like DHL onboard changes the dynamics of professionalism,” commented Charles Saunders, Director of Operations for WBSA.