SA athletes prepare for 50km world champs

19 August 2019 | Sports

The 12-member SA team have entered the final stages of preparation for the International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU) 50km world championships in Brasov, Romania, as they gear up to represent the country on 1 September.

The athletes have been training individually under the watchful eyes of their coaches.

The coaches, in turn, have sent update reports to national team coach Nick Bester. He has been told that all members of the squad are injury-free and in good health.

The six-member men's team includes Bongmusa Mthembu, David Gatebe and Lungile Gongqa, who have all previously won the 56km Two Oceans race in Cape Town, along with current Comrades Marathon champion Edward Mothibi, Charles Tjiane and Joseph Manyedi.

In the six-member women's team, for which Jenna Challenor and Kathryn van Meter have confirmed their unavailability, Athletics South Africa (ASA) selectors have brought in former standard marathon star Tanith Maxwell and ultra-distance specialist Fikile Mbuthuma as their replacements.

They will be joined by Salome Cooper, Ntombesintu Mfunzi, Yolande Maclean and Deanne Horn.

The squad will be aiming for the country's first medal at the championships since Sandile Ngunuza earned silver in the men's race in Galway, Ireland in 2010.

The team will depart from Johannesburg on 28 August and return on 2 September.

- NAMPA/ANA

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