Toyota SA announces R 2 million investment into Cheetahs Academy

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Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM), believes that “sports legends are made – not born”. Therefore, a commitment is required to honing local talent – not just for future Cheetahs players, but for the development of rugby in our country as a whole.

Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) is pleased to announce a further investment as the full naming rights partner to the Toyota Cheetahs Academy. Toyota SA over the past seven years, has cemented its support and commitment to both the Cheetahs and the Free State. The sponsorship has created incredible opportunities for Toyota SA to interact with not only Cheetahs fans but rugby supporters in and across South Africa. The sponsorship now extends even further by investing in the young talent and helping the Toyota Cheetahs to develop the rugby and life skills of our future Cheetahs and Springboks.

“The Free State is home to a rich pool of rugby talent and we are proud to be associated with the Toyota Cheetahs Academy. The possibility of helping young stars achieve their dreams,  is a very exciting and humbling thought, which we are proud to be a part of.” says Calvyn Hamman, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Toyota South Africa Motors.

The Toyota Cheetahs Academy has since its inception in 2015 delivered top quality players for the Toyota Cheetahs senior team. In 2016 when the Toyota Cheetahs won the Currie Cup competition – no less than seven of the Currie Cup winners came through the Toyota Cheetahs academy system. Recent Springbok representatives Oupa Mohoje and Raymond Rule are further examples of the success of this Academy. This is further proof of the system delivering the next generation Toyota Cheetah players.

Harold Verster, MD Toyota Cheetahs commented: “The Toyota Cheetahs has long been the “conveyer belt” of Springboks thanks to a healthy junior system. The Toyota Cheetahs Academy is a critical part of our business. This investment from Toyota will give us even more opportunities to develop young players to represent the proud Cheetah brand, as well as the Springbok brand in future. We’d like to thank our sponsor and Partner – Toyota SA!”

Toyota Cheetahs Academy Fact Sheet

  • Toyota SA has renewed the sponsorship agreement with the Free State Rugby union as the title sponsor of the Cheetahs for 2016-2019
  • Toyota SA has invested R2 000 000 into the academy
  • The Toyota Cheetahs Academy currently consists of 60 players across three age groups namely U19, U20 and U21
  • The academy was established in 2015 as a development centre for junior players with the focus on developing the individual as well as position specific players
  • Most importantly, the main reason for the establishment of the academy was to create a higher conversion ratio of junior players who ultimately sign senior contracts
  • Success Stories:
    • 17 players from the Academy were selected for Currie Cup and Super Rugby squads
    • Ox Nche and Nico Lee were nominated for SARU 2016 Currie Cup Player of the Year Award
    • Ox Nche won the 2016 Currie Cup Player of the Year Award
    • The Currie Cup final 2016 had 5 Academy players selected for the final match
      • Ox Nche
      • Justin Basson
      • Sergeal Peterson
      • Conrad van vuuren
      • Nico Lee
    • Academy Players first selection for Currie Cup 2017
      • Erich de Jager (debut vs Pumas)
      • Jasper Wiese (debut vs Pumas)
      • Reinach Venter (debut vs Sharks + SuperRugby debut vs Kings)
      • Dennis Visser (debut this weekend)
      • Ali Mgijima (debut this weekend)
    • 3 players were nominated for the preliminary Springbok Squad in 2016
      • Ox Nche
      • Sergeal Peterson
      • Joseph Dweba

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