Ready for the world champs

2009-02-10 00:00

RUBEN Ramolefi produced the best performance of the third leg of the Yellow Pages Athletics Series at King’s Park on Friday night.

Ramolefi became the third athlete to book a place for the World Athletics Championships in Berlin when he won the 3 000-metre steeplechase in eight minutes, 20,48 seconds.

“There are a couple of things I need to correct in the water jump. I know when I get that right I can go much faster,” said Ramolefi. “The wind was quite strong on the back straight, but I just tried to put it out of my mind.”

The northerly wind was behind Robert Oosthuizen, whose second trial in the javelin went out to 80,78 metres, only 22 centimetres short of the required A-qualification standard. Hardus Pienaar continued his comeback trial, gradually increasing the distance over the first five attempts to secure second with 77,59 metres.

The 1 500 metres produced the tightest race of the night when Juan van Deventer out-dipped Tshamano Setone and a fast-closing Mbulaeni Mulaudzi to take the honours in three minutes, 38,28 seconds. Van Deventer’s desperate dip saw him crash to the tartan across the line as only 0,27 seconds separated the top three.

South Africa’s leading hurdler of recent years, L. J. van Zyl, and Durban athlete Pieter Koekemoer provided the early highlight for the enthusiastic crowd. In his season’s 400-metre hurdle debut, Van Zyl was carded for a false start when his blocks lost grip. It was Wouter le Roux who led from the restart, with Koekemoer and Van Zyl in close contention as they tackled the headwind in the back straight. Van Zyl, who last week set a personal best of 45,81 seconds over the flat one-lapper, looked to have regained his old form with his trademark second-half charge to record a 50,03.

Fast opening and closing laps by Lebo Phalula secured her win over sister Lebogang in the 5 000 metres. In an attempt to make the 15-minute, 10-second qualifying mark, Lebo passed the first kilometre in three minutes and three seconds, with a 50-metre advantage, while Lebogang lead a tight chasing quintet that included Irvette van Blerk chasing. As Lebogang looked like closing the gap, Lebo threw in a 73-second last lap to take the tape in 15 minutes, 57,81 seconds. Van Blerk’s consistent pace gave her a third.

Nombuleko Mkenku came from behind to out-sprint South Africa’s long jump champion, Janice Josephs, who hones her speed over the short sprint distance. Mkenku, who burst onto the senior international scene in 2007, representing South Africa in the Africa Games and World Championships in Osako, had a quiet year in 2008, but looks to be coming back to her best form.

Men’s results

100 m B: 1 Franscois Maasdorp Tuks 10.80, 2 Ivan Maloney Fast Feet 10.87, 3 Adewale Adejumo UKZN 11.22

100 m: 1 Thuso Mpuang AbsaKO 10.4, 2 Leigh Julius NMMU 10.44, 3 Thabo Mathibidi Platinum 10.6

200 m: 1 Thuso Mpuang AbsaKO 20.68, 2 Thabo Mathibidi Platinum 20.91, 3 Leigh Julius NMMU 20.99

400 m: 1 Talkmore Nyongani ZIM 46.49, 2 Pieter Smith Tuks 46.57, 3 Sibusiso Sishi AbsaUJ 47.37

1 500 m: Juan van Deventer AbsaUJ 3:38:28, 2 Tshamano Setone NED 3:38.29, 3 Mbulaeni Mulaudzi Platinum 3:38.55

5 000 m: 1 Stephen Mokoka Nedbank, 2 Sibusiso Nzima Powerade

400 m hurdles: 1 L. J. van Zyl Tuks 50.03, 2 Pieter Koekemoer Fast Feet 50.65, Johann Hanekom Tuks 51.42

3 000 m steeplechase: 1 Ruben Ramolefi Platinum 8:20.48, 2 Sikhumbuso Seme ADT 8:41.81, 3 Thuso Phaswana Wits 8:45.04

10 000 m walk: 1 Marc Mundell UP 44:04,48 2, Werner Appel AbsaUJ 44:11.59, 3 Sipho Mahlanga Transnet 44:29.22

Javelin: 1 Robert Oosthuizen Maties 80.78, 2 Hardus Pienaar AGN 77:59, 3 Tobie Holtzhausen Pukke 72.06

Women’s results

100 m: 1 Nombulelo Mkenku HTS Louis Botha 11.67, 2 Janice Josephs Maties 11.90, 3 Alyssa Conley AbsaUJ 12.14

400 m: Tsholofelo Thipe Platinium 53.54, 2 Alet van Wyk Tuks 54.92, 3 Eugenie Wicksell Tuks 55.94

5 000 m: 1 Lebo Phalula AbsaUJ 15.57.80, 2 Lebogang Phalula AbsaUJ 16:02.55, 3 Irvette van Blerk Nedbank 16:17.01

3 000 m steeplechase: 1 Nolene Conrad AbsaUJ 10:07.90, 2 Tebogo Masehka Tran 10:31.46, 3 Myrette Filmalter Tuks 10:40.97

10 000 m walk: 1 Michelle Hopkins AbsaUJ 56:32.98

Javelin: 1 Sunette Viljoen Pukke 60.61, 2 Rencia Fourie Pukke 47.64

Shot putt: 1 Veronica Abraharmse Ladysmith 15.72, 2 Bianca van Rooyen AbsaUJ 13.39

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