SA Olympic star parts ways with coach after 16 years

Sunette Viljoen (Gallo)
Sunette Viljoen (Gallo)

Cape Town - South African Olympic medallist Sunette Viljoen has parted ways with her coach after 16 years together.

The 35-year-old won silver in the javelin at the 2016 Rio Olympics in Brazil and is well on course to represent Team South Africa at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. 

That would be Viljoen's FIFTH Olympic Games appearance in a row.

Viljoen took to Twitter on Tuesday to confirm that she had split from her coach.

"My coach, Terseus Liebenberg, and I have parted ways amicably as I will be doing my technical training at TUKS for the next two years," Viljoen tweeted.

"I have only the biggest respect, admiration and gratitude for him for everything he has done for me over so many years. What a gentleman."

When approached by Sport24, Viljoen added that she had never felt in better shape and that she was planning on challenging for a medal in Tokyo.

"I believe the next two years will be the best of my career," she said.

"I am in great shape mentally and physically and am working hard for the World Championships in Doha this year and of course my 5th Olympics in Tokyo in 2020."

Viljoen is one of the most decorated athletes in South African history. 

In addition to her Olympic silver, she has won two Commonwealth Games golds while she also has a silver and a bronze in that competition. She also has a silver and a bronze in the World Championships, while she is a five-time winner at the African Championships.

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