Fillip for sports science bursary fund

18 October 2004

The recent welcome-home function for South African Paralympians, hosted at the Sport Science Institute, boasted a collection of some big names in sport. Not only athletes like Malcolm Pringle and Janice Josephs, but also those who underpin their success. These include scientists like the UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine's (Essm) Professor Mike Lambert, Dr Karen Sharwood, and Ross Tucker who is also Malcolm Pringle's coach, as well as sponsors like Macsteel.

On the evening, Macsteel announced a R50 000 fillip to the Ziphelele Mbambo Memorial Scholarship. Mbambo was about to embark on his PhD in exercise science at UCT when he was killed in a carjacking in KwaZulu-Natal in 1999, a week before his wedding.

The scholarship is a fitting tribute to Mbambo's memory. He was highly regarded by his mentors, and designated as one from whom big things were expected. He was also rare in a circle trying to attract a more representative field of students.

Lambert and other colleagues from the Sports Science Institute and Essm were among the first to support the scholarship. It received a major boost when Professor Tim Noakes donated the R25 000 purse from his 2003 UCT Book Award for the fourth edition of his popular work, The Lore of Running.

Speaking at the event, Lambert said he hoped the fund would play a part in providing the means for other disadvantaged students to study sport science. "We hope it will help to transform the profession of which we are so proud."

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