Pistorius one of five SA athletes at KBC Night of Athletics

2012-07-07 00:00

HEUSDEN ZOLDER — Oscar Pistorius will be one of five South African athletes competing at the KBC Night of Athletics in Heusden-Zolder, Belgium, today.

Pistorius, who is the first disabled athlete to compete in the Paralympics and the able-bodied Olympics after being selected by Sascoc for the team earlier this week, will line up in the men’s 400 metres.

The 25-year-old from Gauteng North ran 45,20 at the Gauteng North Championships. His second fastest time of the season was recorded in Porto Novo in Benin at the Africa Senior Championships on June 28. He crossed the line in 45,52 for a second-place finish.

Jacques de Swardt (19) will also line up in the race after having competed in the men’s 300 m at the Meeting International d’Athleticsme de la Province de Liege in Belgium last night. He ran a personal best of 33,14, finishing fourth. The Tukkie ran his best 400 m time this season in Rhede, Germany, on June 7, clocking 46,06. “There are big names in my race, I am the little one running against my heroes,” said De Swardt.

The big names include Mitchell Manteo (USA), a 4x400 m World Indoor Champion with a personal best this season of 44,96 and Australia’s 400 metre Olympic competitor and 4x400 metre Olympic finalist Joel Milburn.

Thuso Mpuang, who ran a personal best of 20,44 in the men’s 200 m at the SA Open Championships in Pretoria on May 5, has since struggled with his form in Europe.

He also competed at the Africa Senior Championships in Benin, where he finished eighth in 21,39. He will line up in the 200 m event in Belgium.

Other South Africans competing are Hannes Naude in the men’s 800 m and Rikenette Steenkamp in the women’s 100 m hurdles.

The IAAF Grand Prix Eaa Premium meeting will be broadcast on SuperSport 6 from 7 pm.

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