Johannesburg, South Africa – Tennis South Africa has three tennis officials selected to officiate at the 2016 Rio Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Iain Smith, South Africa’s highest qualified official of Pretoria has been selected to be Competition Referee at the Paralympics. Smith will be joined by Mxolisi Matyolo of Vosloorus who will be Line Umpire.

“Being appointed as Referee for the Paralympics is a big responsibility, but an appointment that is very much appreciated and an honour to accept.

Working any of the Games even once is an accomplishment as being part of the Games is a wonderful experience and a privilege” said Smith.

Pieter Hoeksma also from Pretoria has been selected to be Line Umpire at the 2016 Olympic Games.

“I am very happy about the selection for the Olympic Games in Rio next year! When I applied I really didn’t think that I had a chance again after working the 2012 Olympics in London.

I have never been to South America and I’m really looking forward to the challenge.” Said Hoeksma.

Smith, who heads the tennis officiating programme at Tennis South Africa said he is very proud of the two Line Umpires selected and the fact that since 1996 Olympics, South Africa has had officials officiating at the various Olympics and Paralympics.

Gavin Crookes, President of TSA gave his congratulations to the selected. ” My particular congratulations to Iain for being appointed the Competition Referee for the Paralympics – a fantastic achievement for Iain and a great honour for South Africa.”

The 2016 Olympics and Paralympic Game will be hosted by Rio, Brazil. The Olympic Games will be from 5 to 21 August, with the Paralympics from 7 to 18 September 2016.

Meanwhile TSA confirmed that three of their white badge officials namely Mpho Makhoba, Mxolisi Matyolo and George Phiri were in Cassablance, Morocco attending a Level 3 School. They join 20 other official from all over Africa at the school. Makhoba is attending a Chief of Umpire module (Silver badge), Matyolo a Referee module (Silver badge) and Phiri and Chair Umpire module (Bronze badge). Should the three be successful, they will receive international certificates.

South Africa currently has 10 White Badge officials and two International officials. Both international officials are Referee’s namely Anton Rens (Silver Badge) and Iain Smith (Gold Badge).