I was nervous - Mboma

Sprint sensation Christine Mboma says she was very nervous before the race in which she won gold in the Czech Republic on Monday.

09 June 2021 | Sports

LIMBA MUPETAMI

WINDHOEK

Youthful sprint star Christine Mboma blew the world away on Monday as she came from the back in the fifth lane and blasted past her opponents to win gold and set a new national record as well as a meet record in 22.67 seconds at the Josef Odlozil Memorial event in Prague.

The athlete said she was trying very hard to concentrate on the race and was very excited about the win.

She added that she does not like giving up and just ran as best as she could, even though she was trailing behind.

The shy athlete sent a message to her family, thanking them for believing in her. “Thank you for your love and support. I will continue to make you proud,” she said.

Botha magic

Her coach, Henk Botha, was over the moon with the performances of his star athletes Mboma and Beatrice Masilingi.

“I told you. I told you,” were the only words the coach could utter when Mboma ran up to him after the race to hug him.

“We are over the moon. Masilingi had a small fault with clothing, that is why she missed her stride in the last 30 metres. But Mboma once again showed the world that if you get her on full speed she can run. There is still a lot of work and technique that needs to be worked on, however,” Botha added.

“She is the fastest woman in the world and I’m very proud of the girls. We did well and are very happy,” said Botha.

Despite a slow start, teenage sensation Mboma beat the experienced Gina Bass from Gambia (22.76) and her fellow Namibian Beatrice Masilingi (22.83) who took second and third spot.

The two athletes have already qualified for next month’s Tokyo Olympic Games and are using the last weeks to prepare for the Games.

Before then, Masilingi will compete in France and Mboma in Spain, said the coach, who shares a surname with Ans Botha, who coached Wayde van Niekerk to 400m gold glory at the 2016 Olympic Games, thus smashing Michael Johnson’s 17-year-old record. That was the first Olympic gold medal for a South African sprinter for almost a century.

“We haven’t finalised all competitions, but Masilingi will run on 9 July in France and Mboma in Spain,” said Botha.

AN happy with progress

Athletics Namibia’s president, Erwin Naimwaka, congratulated the two athletes on their performance.

“We are excited to see preparations for Tokyo progressing well,” he said.

Asked what AN’s involvement was in the athletes’ preparations, he said they were rendering administrative support. He didn’t explain what that in-tails.

Namibian marathon queen Helalia Johannes also congratulated the two sprinters. Johannes will also be part of Namibia’s team travelling to the Games.

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