The South African men’s hockey team has enlisted the help of digital platform Matchkit.co in a bid to raise the money required to fund their Tokyo 2021 Olympic campaign.
Mathckit.co has enabled the team to set up a crowdfunding campaign, with a plea to all corporates, fans and the public to get behind the team as they look to raise the R3.5m needed to fulfil their Olympic dream.
“We are running a highly professional environment with very little financial support,” says National Coach Garreth Ewing. “All of the teams who are ranked above us on the rankings have full-time resources, including players and staff. All of our players and staff have full-time jobs, and every bit of support will go a long way. We are ranked 14th and the goal is for us to play the top six teams in the world to test ourselves against the best. We have been invited to a few tournaments overseas in preparation for Tokyo, but the challenge remains the ability to meet the financial demands required of us to participate. Getting to the Olympics is a dream come true, especially considering how difficult it is to qualify. We have done the hard work and deserve to be there; it would be heart-breaking if we are unable to go. We hope as many beneficiaries as possible will come out in support of our dream.”
Matchkit launched in June 2020 and aims to give athletes access to a growing global digital environment, along with commercialising their individual brands.
“Our purpose is to help athletes better commercialise their careers,” says Matchkit Co-Founder Mike Sharman. “In 10 months we’ve created partnerships with Red Bull, South America’s six rugby-playing nations and the USA Olympic swimming team, but the project most close to our heart is SA men’s hockey. They are fully-transformed with 50% black team members at player level and 60% black representatives at management level, yet there is still zero support from SASCOC. We are offering our tech up for free to help the hockey team raise the R3.5m-R5m to get them to Tokyo.”
Goalkeeper Siya Ntshulunga is an example of a national team member who has to juggle a full-time job with representing his country.
“It is very difficult finding sponsorship opportunities, so any platform that can help grow my profile and brand will be beneficial towards getting that support,” he says. “The challenges of working full-time, playing sport and representing your country is never an easy task, it comes with great responsibility and sacrifices, from waking up extra early in the morning to push yourself in training to then fulfilling your KPI’s at work during the day. Not many people have the opportunity to represent their country, so we have to make sure we make the most of all the opportunities and resources we get. I’m so thankful to Matchkit for offering us this platform and I hope the supporters will get behind us.”
Interested beneficiaries can pledge their support for the team on the crowdfunding link on the profile below: https://matchkit.co/springdog