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Cape Town Executive Mayor wishes athlete well for Tokyo Paralympics<p>​</p><p>‘It has been difficult to secure funds to cover the costs to compete. Most of my expenses to compete must be covered by myself, so I am grateful for the sponsorship towards the equipment needed. It has taken a lot of effort over a number of years to get back to playing professionally at this level and competing on an international stage like the Paralympics is a dream come true for me,’ said Theo Cogill.</p><p>‘Mr Cogill’s example of determination and resilience is an example to all to never give up on your dreams. Young people need role models and Mr Cogill is an example of how, with determination and honing your skills, you can achieve great things. I am pleased that we can offer assistance to this young man so he can reach a major goal in his life. Competing as a professional athlete requires resources, and the donation will go towards the correct shoes and clothing. On behalf of the City of Cape Town, we wish him well and are rooting for him to bring home a medal,’ said Executive Mayor Dan Plato. </p><p>Cogill, 34, from Bonteheuwel represents South Africa at the Abled and Disabled National & International teams for Table Tennis. He recently wrote to the City to request financial support to participate in the Paralympic Games starting later this month. This request has been assessed and he is expected to depart for Tokyo later this month before the tournament starts on 24 August. </p><p>Cogill’s story is inspirational, having been the first South African male to win an international medal in Egypt, at the age of 14.  After further competitions, he was scouted and received further training. </p><p>In 2011, he suffered a near career-ending setback when he was stabbed trying to break up an altercation, injuring his neck, lower back and arm. After close to six months in hospital, he returned home and had to learn how to walk again.  Eventually he regained his ability to walk and focused on building strength to once again be able to play table tennis. </p><p>‘Theo Cogill represented South Africa for the first time at the Commonwealth Games in 2018 and inspired us with his budding career. The City is proud to sponsor Theo in the upcoming games. I hope that other young people take inspiration from his story and embrace an open opportunity society by working hard for what they want and asking for possibilities,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Community Services and Health, Cllr Zahid Badroodien.</p><p>Through perseverance and tenacity, he qualified to compete professionally as a differently-abled athlete and placed second at the All-Africa Games. In 2017, he was the first South African male to win a Gold Medal in the Taichung/Taiwan International Open. This was followed by the Italian Open, the Belgium Para Open, winning bronze and silver medals.  </p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br></p>2021-08-15T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#f60216f6-93ec-4c26-bce1-440d1485abb1;L0|#0f60216f6-93ec-4c26-bce1-440d1485abb1|sports;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#90b49a62-96e2-436a-9c68-187c9ab33534;L0|#090b49a62-96e2-436a-9c68-187c9ab33534|Mayor;GP0|#c7205570-6235-409c-bfd7-dccf25c7746a;L0|#0c7205570-6235-409c-bfd7-dccf25c7746a|olympians;GPP|#3f6b57a4-ccec-41fc-b8f7-035b81ad91bc10

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