“My dream of going to the Olympic Games has been with me ever since I was lucky enough to be introduced to sports physiotherapy through UWC.”
Those were the words of 28-year-old University of the Western Cape (UWC) Alumna, Kayla Richards who will be part of South Africa’s medical staff heading to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
According to a statement by UWC, the once Lotus River resident graduated with a BSc in Physiotherapy in 2015 and relocated to Johannesburg to start her own mobile physiotherapy practice.
However, her journey to the pinnacle of her profession in the South African Olympics team has not been easy as she had to start at the lowest level of local sport. She also provided her services to USSA and other universities.
“I have a task that I set out and need to do – one that I promised to the Lotus River people, to myself, and to my family… I will do whatever I can to accomplish it,” Richards said.
She describes her involvement as an honour and a privilege to get to showcase her craft amongst the top athletes from around the world.
“It took a while for it to sink in and to realize that this is actually happening. I can only grow and progress from this point onwards, as I’m not only representing my country, but also my family, my community, and many girls who are yet to achieve their dreams,” Richards said.
With her Olympic dream now becoming a reality, Richards indicated that the call-up to be part of the South African team was emotional, and has vowed to give her utmost to South Africa and to support the team wherever possible.
Meanwhile, Olympics organisers confirmed that 71 people have now tested positive for Covid-19. This includes 31 people among the tens of thousands of international visitors expected in Japan to compete or work at the Games, which starts on Friday, July 23, Alive reported.