Caster’s performance encouraging

2012-03-07 00:00

CASTER Semenya provided one of the better performances in the second and final of the Yellow Pages Interprovincial challenge in Bellville, Cape Town.

The 2011 World 800-metre silver medalist showed good form in winning the 400 metres in 53,62 seconds ahead of early leader Justine Palframan.

KZN’s Palframan, who has recently spent a few weeks training in Jamaica under the coaching of Patrick Dawson, had the lead until Semenya increased the power going into the final bend.

Palframan was outclassed, but as a junior, and given the strong blustering winds that were recorded as high as five metres per second, the youngster’s 54,00 second place was a useful performance towards her goal of reaching the World Junior Championships in Barcelona.

Semenya’s primary focus is on the European season with only a couple of appearances expected locally, but Saturday’s performance suggests the early season endurance work has laid a good foundation in her progression towards London 2012.

Palframan was the fastest junior sprinter earning victory in the third heat of the 100 m for her 12,21 against a 4,8 m/s wind.

Pieter van der Westhuizen could only record 3:41,74 in the 1 500  metre.

Burger Lambrechts, also one of the South African quartet who have qualified for the World Indoor Championships, rounded off his build-up with a disappointing 19,61-metre shot putt victory.

The sprint double went to Free State’s Thuso Mpuang, but disappointing wind disrupted times of 10,89 and 21,23 respectively.

With 400 m athlete Shane Victor taking second in his event, and some reasonable performances in the relays, the KwaZulu-Natal team finished sixth in the interprovincial competition in Bellville and sixth overall at the end of the two- match series, although this is hardly the level one would expect from the country’s second largest athletic province.

Gauteng North (48 462 points) defended their 2011 title with Western Province (46 226) hanging on to second.

***

South Africa selected a quartet of athletes for the eighth edition of the World Indoor Championships in Istanbul, Turkey this weekend.

Elroy Gelant (3 000 m), Khotso Mokoena (long jump), Lehann Fourie (60 hurdles) and Burger Lambrechts (shot putt) will be hoping to make a mark on the medal table, but the withdrawal of Mokoena could well see the team return without a medal.

***

Perfect Dlamini was the clear victor in the Helios Oasis Crescent half-marathon held over a fast course from Kings Park in Durban, winning in 1:09,58 seconds ahead of Sipho Ngcongo and Schaba Bohosi. Maya Lawrie won the women’s event in 1:24,43.

Sithembel Fanekho and Adam Lipschits diced out the 10 km beachfront race with the Boxer runner taking the honour in 31 minutes 20 seconds. Tanith Maxwell won the women’s race in 36 minutes and two seconds.

***

Klip River Striders dominated Saturday’s Emnambithi half-marathon in Ladysmith, with Philani Buthelezi and Nhlanhla Khumalo securing first and second in 73,13 and 73,39 minutes respectively.

***

The cross-country season kicks off on Friday with the annual Parlauf at the Westville clubhouse at 6 pm. There are four events from 6 pm — boys and girls U12, junior boys and girls and the open events. Kylie Griffin has more information at 082 563 0574. ***

The Verulam club has their Gaterite Challenge this Sunday from the Verulam recreational grounds starting at 5 am. Velvan has more details at 084 251 2901.

***

Midlands and northern Natal runners will be out in force at the Vryheid Athletics Challenge on Saturday from Pioneer High School in Vryheid at 6 am.

Sean Roberts has more details at 073 867 5712.

***

The KwaZulu-Natal Junior Provincial Championships combine with the KZN Secondary Schools’ Provincial Championships this weekend on the Kings Park track commencing on Friday.

RESULTS

The Helios Oasis Crescent Half-marathon and 10 km

Men:

1. Perfect Dlamini 69,58; 2. Sipho Ngcongo 71,21.

Women:

1. Maya Lawrie 84,43; 2. Debbie Perry 89,38

10 km:

1. Sithembel Fanekho 31,20; 2. Adam Lipschits 31,30

Women:

1. Tanith Maxwell 36,02; 2. Cary Ann Smith 36,53.

 

Emnambithi Half-marathon 21,1km:

Men:

1. Philani Buthelezi 1:13,13

2. Nhlanhlana Khumalo 1:13,39

Women:

1. Nonsikelelo Mbambo 1:35,49

2. Mndiando Mfumsa 1:45,05

 

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