SA's Charl du Toit calls time on career after Birmingham silver: 'A storybook ending'

accreditation
0:00
play article
Subscribers can listen to this article

South African para-athlete Charl du Toit has called time on his glittering career after securing silver in the men's T37/38 100m final at the Commonwealth Games on Wednesday.

Du Toit, born with cerebral palsy, rose to prominence at the 2016 Paralympics, where he sealed double gold in the T37 100m and 400m in Rio.

Du Toit, running in lane 7, ran a Commonwealth Games record in the T37 100m to cross the finish line second in 11.54. Australian Evan O'Hanlon took gold in a T38 Games record time of 11.23.

"I'm officially announcing my retirement from athletics and this was my very last race. I couldn't have asked for a more storybook ending," Du Toit said after the race.

"Tears of joy and tears of excitement and this was a very special race for me."

Follow the Commonwealth Games LIVE

After a disappointment at last year's Tokyo Paralympics, where he finished eighth in the final, Du Toit was determined to end on a high in Birmingham.

Du Toit also ran a season-best in the final and the 29-year-old had nothing to lose in his final race for South Africa.

"It was a bit of Rio déjà vu, when I got on the blocks, I was like I need a good start. I've been really struggling this season to put it together," said Du Toit.

"This was my best race of the season, and when I got to 50m, I knew I needed to hold my form and just go. I didn't look back, maybe second or third, and I realised I was just going and it was so fun.

"I had to learn a lot after Tokyo so all credit to our coach Suzanne Ferreira. She's guided me so well, and everyone supported me," he continued.

"I would've regretted not going one more year, and I needed this year for myself and just to enjoy athletics again and that's exactly what happened. Could not have asked for a better ending."

Du Toit insists this won't be the last of him as he hopes to be involved in athletics in some capacity in the future.

"I've had this wonderful career, I just feel it's time, but I'm not done with athletics. Athletics is in my blood so I'll be involved there, but as an athlete, I've had to call it," said Du Toit.

"Not a lot of athletes have an opportunity to end their career this way and I'm so privileged and the glory to Jesus Christ. I enjoyed every second of it."

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For 14 free days, you can have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today. Thereafter you will be billed R75 per month. You can cancel anytime and if you cancel within 14 days you won't be billed. 
Subscribe to News24
Voting Booth
Would you be keen to see the Springboks join the Six Nations?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes! The Northern Hemisphere is the future.
53% - 5179 votes
No! The Rugby Championship is still the pinnacle.
47% - 4557 votes
Vote