Runs in the family

2008-10-27 00:00

The KZN Schools Invitation athletics team that participated in the prestigious Clover athletics meeting at Grey College in Bloemfontein recently came back with some superb results.

There were 15 school teams in both the girls’ and boys’ sections from all over the country that participated, but as KwaZulu-Natal athletics is behind the rest of the country, an invitation team from the province, chosen after the meeting at King’s Park, competed against individual schools.

Schools that had teams in both the girls’ and boys’ sections in the U14, 15 16 and 17 age groups were Sentraal and Jim Fouche (both Bloemfontein), Eldoraigne, Oos-Moot and Kempton Park (all Gauteng), DF Malan (Bellville), Tygerberg (Parow), Outeniqua, Frames-by (Port Elizabeth) and Potchefstroom Gym.

In the boys’ section the schools were hosts Grey College, Affies (Pretoria), Louis Botha (Bloemfontein) and Paul Roos (Stellenbosch). Girls’ schools represented were Oranje Meisies and Fichardtpark (both Bloemfontein), Pretoria Afrikaans Dogters and Bloemhof Meisies (Stellenbosch). In total this was 15 boys and girls teams, four more than in 2007.

In 2007, the KZN Invitation team returned with their best medal haul, 39. This year they won 24 medals but the quality of some of their performances was much higher. Last year two records were broken by the KZN athletes while this year there were five records set by KZN athletes.

Each individual performance was scored on the Absa points table, enabling comparisons to be made in different events and in the different age groups.

The top individual points scored in the KZN team was 1 017 by Justine

Palframan from Eshowe High School, undoubtedly the top individual performer in the girls’ section. In the girls’ U15 200 metres, she was timed at 24,17 seconds, which set a new record, breaking the 2002 record of 25,00 seconds. Palframan later broke the U15

400 metre record by almost three seconds when she was timed at 55,25 secs and here earned 995 points.

In the 100 metre Palframan scored the third best points for the KZN team of 981 winning in 11,97 seconds, just under 0,2 secs outside the record.

Older sister Katelyn Palframan also from Eshowe, broke the 200 metre record in the U16 age group in a time of 25,23 seconds. This gained 826 points, but in the 100 metres — where she was just 0,02 seconds slower than the record — she gained 891 points.

Simone Meyer, from Pionier in Vryheid, scored 969 points in the girls’ U15 discus, throwing 40,16 metres and breaking the 2003 record by nearly five metres. She also won the shotput with a throw of 12,28 metres.

The other record-breaker was Ricolan Ricardo from Green Park HS in Durban, who won the boys’ U14 400 metres in 53,11 seconds cutting 0,5 seconds off the record.

Other gold medal winners were Willie Smith (Maritzburg College) who cleared 1,80 metres in the boys’ U14 high jump gaining 907 points. Dumi Ndlovu from Treverton won the boys’ U16 long jump with a leap of 6,40 metres which earned 765 points.

In the U17 long jump Cole Dyer, also from Maritzburg College, jumped 6,60 metres to earn 755 points and win the gold.

Silver medals were won by L. Smit (Durban Girls College) in the girls’ 800 metres, S. Sishi (Pmb GHS) in the U15 long jump, D. Jula (Port Shepstone) in the boys’ U17 high jump and Ricardo in the U14 200 metres in 23,1 seconds which earned 905 points, to go with his two golds.

The bronze medal winners among the girls, were C. Hesom (Hermannsburg) in both the U17 high jump and long jump, M. Liebetrau (Durban Girl’s College) in the U15 800 metres and

T. Canham (Felixton) in the U15 high jump.

The boys’ bronze medal winners were J. Hohls (Wartburg) in javelin and D. le Roux (St Charles), both in the U17 age group, A. Bezuidenhout (M. College) in the U16 110 metre hurdles, B. Jasson (M. College) in the U14 long jump and Wiseman Ndlovu (M. College) who earned 825 points in the 100 metres, with a time of 11,54 seconds.

There were a further five athletes who just missed out on the medals, coming fourth in their events. The best performer from these was R. Bartlett from Hilton who earned 798 points when he was timed at 11,40 seconds in the Boy’s U15 100 metres.

The records now held by KZN athletes at this meeting, which have been held for the past 10 years include the five from 2008 and a further two records from 2007 by Meyer in the U14 discus and J. Palframan in the U14 400 metre.

In 2006 Kelvin Adams (DHS) broke two records in the U14 high jump and long jump and, Dawie Greef (Voor-trekker) set the U16 high jump record, which stands at 2,02 metres. Sibusiso Sishi (M. College) broke the 100 U17 record in 2002 with a time of 10,50 seconds and this year he was a member of the 400 metre South African relay team at the Beijing Olympics.

This certainly shows that athletics in the province does have a following and each year some of the individual performances are among the best in the country.

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