Kobus van der Walt retires as Director of TuksSport

Posted on February 27, 2017


The University of Pretoria formally bade farewell to Mr Kobus van der Walt, former director of TuksSport, at an event hosted by Prof Cheryl de la Rey, the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Pretoria (UP), on Thursday, 16 February 2017. Prof Denver Hendricks, Manager of Government Relations and Special Projects at the University, was the master of ceremonies and welcomed all the guests.

Prof De la Rey thanked Mr Van der Walt for his eighteen years of service to the University and spoke of the many successes TuksSport had achieved during his time at the helm. She highlighted TuksRugby, who were crowned Varsity Cup champions for the first time, and TuksCricket, who achieved exceptional success both locally and internationally. She mentioned that many other sports codes had also excelled at regional, national and international levels. Prof De la Rey extended an open invitation to Mr Van der Walt to come back and share stories of TuksSport successes earned under his leadership. 'Tonight, Kobus, you have truly earned your colours and you have always given gold-medal service. Your legacy will live on,' she said.

Prof Nick Grove, Registrar of the University of Pretoria, who was Mr Van der Walt's line manager, praised his selfless dedication in putting TuksSport on the map and nurturing a culture of trust, honesty, loyalty and discipline in the organisation.

When Mr Van der Walt took to the podium, he opened with an emotional tribute to the late Springbok rugby player Joost van der Westhuizen, who was also a UP and TuksSport alumnus. He spoke about the behind-the-scenes activities that made TuksSport so successful and said that his greatest joy was when the students became like his own children, filling him with pride when he saw them achieve success. 'People might forget what you taught them, but they will not forget how you made them feel,' he said. He also expressed his thanks to his team of deputy directors, and singled out Dr Rendani Mulaudzi with a special note of thanks for always, 'dotting my i's and crossing my t's.'

Mr Van der Walt concluded his farewell speech by thanking Prof De La Rey for her guidance, leadership and motivation. His role will be filled in an acting capacity by, Mr Toby Sutcliffe, CEO of the High Performance Centre. Mr Sutcliffe stated that Mr Van der Walt's contribution to sport at UP had been immense and that he had gone out of his way to ensure that TuksSport was always at the forefront of any new developments. 'The University has become synonymous with outstanding performances over the past several years, largely due to Kobus's efforts,' said Mr Sutcliffe.



- Author Myan Subrayan

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