SA names strong team
Fri, 21 Jul 2006
Athletics South Africa on Thursday announced a team of 57 athletes consisting of 35 men and 22 women, to participate at the African Senior Championships to be held in Mauritius from 9-13 August 2006.
The team is a mixture of experience and youth, which is in line with ASA’s policy to build and develop a strong team for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
A major motivation for the athletes at this year’s African Senior Championships is the selection of the Africa team that will represent the continent at the IAAF World Cup in Athens, Greece on 16 and 17 September 2006.
South Africa topped the medal table at the 2004 African Senior Championships in Brazzaville, Congo and the athletes will go all out to improve on this performance.
Amongst the young athletes who will be hungry for success at these Championships is 400 metres hurdler, LJ van Zyl, who together with his team-mates, Alwyn Myburgh, and Ter de Villiers can make a clean sweep in the 400 metres hurdles.
Khotso Mokoena, who in the past weekend set a new national record of 8.39 metres in the long jump in Finland, can avenge his defeat at the Commonwealth Games at the hands of Ghanaian Ignisius Gaisah.
Mokoena also stands a good chance to lift the triple jump title.
The other young talent who can shine at the championships are Anika Smit, currently Africa’s best high jumper, Paul Gorries and Ofentse Mogawane in the 400 metres, Leigh Julius in the sprints, and new national and Africa record holder in the women’s javelin, Justine Robbeson.
Experienced campaigner Mbulaeni Mulaudzi will lead South Africa’s attack in the middle distances.
Mulaudzi’s battle with the Kenyans in the 800 metres will mark the highlight of the Championships.
Mulaudzi will be well supported by Johan Cronje, Juan van Deventer and Johan Pretorius in the 1 500 metres, the Phalula twins in the 800 metres for women and Tebogo Masehla and Nolene Conrad in the 3 000 metres steeplechase for women.
South Africa will be well represented in the field events and medal performances will be expected from the likes of Ramsay Carelse (high jump), Okkert Brits (pole vault), Hardus Pienaar and Gerbrandt Grobler (javelin) and Chris Harmse (hammer).
Except for Robbeson, women field athletes like Elizna Naude (discus), Sunette Viljoen (Javelin) and Samantha Dodd (pole vault) are expected to dominate the proceedings.
South Africa will also be represented in the combined events.
Janice Josephs following her new South African record in Arles, France recently, should win gold in the women’s heptathlon while Jannie Botha, Sors Joubert and Terence Wepener could be amongst the medallists in the men’s decathlon.
The team will depart for Mauritius on August 7, and will return to South Africa on August 14.
Men: Sherwin Vries (100 metres, 200 metres, 4x100 metres), Leigh Julius (100 metres, 200 metres, 4x100 metres), Snyman Prinsloo (200 metres, 4x100 metres), Jan van der Merwe (400 metres, 4x400 metres), Ofentse Mogawane (400 metres, 4x400 metres), Paul Gorries (400 metres, 4x400 metres), Mbulaeni Mulaudzi (800 metres), Juan van Deventer (1 500 metres), Johan Cronje (1 500 metres), Johan Pretorius (1 500 metres), Boy Soke (5 000 metres), Ruben Ramolefi (3 000 metres steeplechase), Emmanuel Mkhabela (3 000m steeplechase), Shaun Bownes (110 metres hurdles), Ruan de Vries (110 metres hurdles), LJ van Zyl (400 metres hurdles, 4x400 metres), Ter de Villiers (400 metres hurdles), Alwyn Myburgh (400 metres hurdles, 4x400 metres), Ramsay Carelse (high jump), Khotso Mokoena (long jump, triple jump), Yaw Fosu-Amoah (long jump), Okkert Brits (pole vault), Janus Roberts (shot put), Chris Harmse (hammer throw), Hardus Pienaar (javelin throw), Gerbrandt Grobler (javelin throw), Hannes Hopley (discus throw), Marc Mundell (20 kilometre walk), Wayne Snyman (20 kilometre walk), Lee-Roy Newton (4x100 metres), Hannes Dreyer (4x100 metres), Ruben Majola (4x400 metres), Sors Joubert (decathlon), Terence Wepener (decathlon), Jannie Botha (decathlon)
Women: Geraldine Pillay (100 metres, 200 metres), Estie Wittstock (400 metres, 4x400 metres), Heide Seyerling (400 metres, 4x400 metres), Amanda Kotze (400 metres, 4x400 metres), Lebo Dinah Phalula (800 metres), Lebogang Phalula (800 metres), Chanelle Olivier (1 500 metres), Nolene Conrad (3 000 metres steeplechase), Tebogo Masehla (3 000 metres steeplechase), Janet Wienand (400 metres hurdles, 4x400 metres), Suzenne Erasmus (20 kilometre walk), Nicolene Cronje (20 kilometre walk), Anika Smit (high jump), René van der Merwe (high jump), Marna Fourie (high jump), Karen Mey (long jump), Samantha Dodd (pole vault), Lindie Roux (pole vault), Elizna Naudé (discus), Sunnete Viljoen (javelin), Justine Robbeson (javelin), Janice Josephs (heptathlon)