Viljoen the pick of the SA athletes in overseas competitions

2010-07-13 00:00

A NUMBER of South African’s were in action in Thursday’s Lausanne Diamond League where Usain Bolt reconfirmed his 100 m fitness with a blistering 9,82-second victory. Countryman Johan Blake was second in 9,96 seconds while World 800 m champion, Mbulaeni Mulaudzi, continued his season on the European circuit when he ran one of his fastest times this year to finish second behind Kenyan David Rudisha.

In a three-way dash for the line, Mulaudzi was a shoulder behind Rudisha, who clocked 1:43:25 to the South African’s 1:43:58. Mulaudzi will be pleased to have squeezed Kenyan Alfred Yego into third by 0,39 seconds. Mulaudzi is expected to be one of the mainstays of the SA team due to be announced this week for the African Championships in Nairobi at the end of the month.

Johan Cronje had a reasonable outing in the 1 500 metres where his 3:35:24 put him seventh in an all African field that was led over the line by Kenya’s Kiptanui Kemboi in 3:31:52, with Moroccan Amine Laalou and Remmy Ndiwa in a close dice for second in 3:32:75 and 3:32:83 respectively.

After her recent sojourn to the United States, Rene Kalmer was back on the European circuit where she finished 15th in the 3 000 metres in 8:59:48, fully 15 seconds slower than her previous best 8:44:17, recorded in France last month. No doubt some of this could be accounted for by the trans-Atlantic travel of recent weeks.

The race was run by Vivian Cheruiyot who was clear of Turk Alemitu Bekele at line, clocking a useful 8:34:58 to Bekele’s 8:35:19. For once, Meseret Defar had to settle for third in 8:36:09.

After having been one of three athletes who failed to finish the 3 000 m steeplechase in Lausanne on Thursday, Ruben Ramolefi had a redeeming outing in Gateshead on Saturday where he finished eighth in 8:41:80 behind Kenyan winner Linus Chumba. Chumba crossed the line over two seconds clear of Michael Kipyego in 8:19:71.

The best South African performance came from Javelin-throwing Sunette Viljoen who sent the spear out to 64,32 metres over 1,2 metres further than American Kara Patterson. This is a useful return to form by Viljoen who should be good for gold in the African Championships.

The third South African in action on Saturday was Peter van der Westhuizen who finished eighth in the 1 500 metres in 3:35:97. Asbel Kiprop won the four-way sprint to the line in three minutes and 33,34 seconds. Only 0,62 seconds separated the top four.

Back in the province, a trio of Mr Price athletes commandeered Sunday’s Forest 10 km over a figure-of-eight course through the suburb perched in the middle of the Kloof Gorge.

Prodigal Khumalo, Professor Mollen and Richard Nene were all closely bunched until the final approaches where Khumalo opened 80 metres over Mollen to take the line honours in 31 min:31sec. Nene had to settle for third only 10 metres behind Mollen.

South Africa’s top marathoner showed she is still on track in preparation for a good marathon with her domination of the ladies race. With just under a kilometre lead, Tanith Maxwell crossed the line in 34min:39sec, which would certainly be equivalent to a 33-minute time on a more conducive course. Maxwell, who is set to get a run in Berlin in September, is clearly edging towards a 2:30 marathon time.

Savage’s Nkosi Mhlongo was Maxwell’s closest rival, but was a distant 37min:34sec with Cary-Ann Smith also well off pace crossing the line in 39 minutes exactly for the third podium place.

Boxer’s Maya Lawrie outran her younger team colleague Janine Carey to take the 40-49 category in 39:11, while Carey’s 39:24 secured the 35-39 grouping.

Local runner Michael Mzdoe out-stripped more established athletes to win the annual Sardine Half Marathon along the Old South Coast Road.

Mzdoe took only one hour, twelve minutes and three seconds to complete the undulating but very scenic out and back route between Uvongo and Hibberdene. South African Police athlete Eric Ndabala was Mzdoe’s closest competitor, arriving back at Douglas Mitchell Park 250 metres off the pace but well clear of third-placed Vusi Mnyandu from the Mr Price club. Ndabala was also first in the 35-39 age group while Mnyandu took 1:14:58 for the 21,1 kilometres.

The ladies race also saw a home-ground winner when Deborah Lambourn took the line honours in one hour, 34 minutes and four seconds. Lambourn left many younger contenders in her wake to secure victory in the 40-49 age group and had over 500 metres lead on Jo McKenzie, who had made the trip from Underberg down to the coast for the Sardine run. Iris Ndlovu was exactly one minute adrift from McKenzie to take third spot in 1:37:10.

Forest 10 km

Men: 1 Prodigal Khumalo Mr P 31:31, 2 Professor Mollen Mr P 31:45, 3 Richard Nene Mr P 31:48

35-39 Thembinkosi Gumede Boxer 33:33

40-49 Sibusiso Nyuli Ned 37:36

50-59 Richard Toyota 40:02

60+ Petros Shumi Zabalana 45:49

Ladies: 1 Tanith Maxwell Boxer 34:39, 2 Nkosi Mhlongo Sav 37:34, 3 Cary-Ann Smith 39:00

35-39 Janine Carey Boxer 39:24

40-49 Maya Lawrie Boxer 39:11

50-59 Karen Warren Kersney Strider 47:09

60+ Ann Weeden PDAC 45:47

Sardine Run Half Marathon:

Men: 1 Michael Mzdoe IND 1:12:03, 2 Eric Ndabala SAPF 1:12:55, 3 Vusi Mnyandu Mr P 1:14:58

35-39 Eric Ndabala SAPF 1:12:55

40-49 Michael Malunga Toyota 1:17:49

50-59 Jeremiah Ngwenya Boxer 1:24:15

60+ Michael Langa AN 1:33:52

Ladies: 1 Deborah Lambourn SCS 1:34:04, 2 Jo McKenzie Sani 1:36:10, 3 Iris Ndlovu Boxer 1:37:10

35-39 Lungile Nkosi Eskom 2:00:50

40-49 Deborah Lambourn SCS 1:34:04

50-59 Sandra Fismer HH 1:38:51

60+ Gill Tregenna West 2:02:20

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