New television coverage of school sports a game-changer

Lukhanyo Am of the Sharks had very few opportunities at school to play rugby. He and Proteas netball captain Bongi Msomi have been named as ambassadors for the initiative to televise school sport.
GIVING GUIDANCE: Lukhanyo Am of the Sharks had very few opportunities at school to play rugby. He and Proteas netball captain Bongi Msomi have been named as ambassadors for the initiative to televise school sport.
Image: GALLO IMAGES/ STEVE HAAG

School sports is set to get a television coverage boost with the launch of SuperSport Schools after its acquisition of the popular social media channel Schools Sport Live. 

The broadcaster's majority stake in Schools Sport Live will see the business rebranded as SuperSport Schools.

Matches will be broadcast on SuperSport channels as well as via a mobile application.

The focus will be on netball, hockey and rugby for the initial implementation phase, with cricket and water polo following as the programme extends. The purpose of the initiative is to identify and give exposure to young talent.

Nashua will be the enabling partner as part of the rollout of SuperSport Schools. The production plan will embrace new technology by giving schools access to innovative artificial intelligence-based productions that will deliver a dynamic, multi-screen viewing of schools and youth sport.

SuperSport CEO Marc Jury said the success of school sports was fundamental in producing a winning sporting nation.

“This initiative is a natural extension of our mission to play our part in growing the pipeline for SA's future sporting heroes. School sports is the foundation from which great sporting nations are built. The stronger the foundation, the brighter our future sporting stars can shine,” Jury said.

The Eastern Cape is set to be one of the pioneering regions of the programme.

One of the province's greatest rugby products, Sharks captain Lukhanyo Am, has been named an ambassador of the initiative alongside Proteas netball captain Bongi Msomi. 

Am, who went to Hoërskool De Vos Malan, never got much look-in as a schoolboy rugby player.

He was excited by the development of SuperSport Schools and the opportunities it will present to schoolchildren. 

“I think this is a game-changer,” the World Cup winner said. “I remember when I was young all I wanted was exposure; to be seen.

“Unfortunately, back in my time, I missed the opportunity. For me as a rugby player, who wanted to have a future as a professional athlete, it took quite a long route to get to where I wanted to be. 

“Being spotted at a young age, being given the opportunity, will definitely play a huge role in our future champions. 

“This programme means everything to me because I know how it felt being unseen and not getting the stage to display your talents. Giving these opportunities to kids, grooming them, will definitely change their lives,” Am said. 

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