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South African athletes have taken London by storm at the IAAF World Championships, currently taking place in the English capital.

 

Luvo Manyonga and Ruswahl Samaai got the ball rolling last weekend, grabbing Gold and Bronze respectively in the Men’s Long Jump.

Manyonga’s feat was particularly impressive given that the Rio 2016 Silver Medallist is a former drug addict, having gone on record to say that five years ago he was about 5 per cent away from death, such was his addiction to “tik”, a local variant of crystal methamphetamine.

While sprinter Akani Simbine didn’t make the podium in the Men’s 100m race, he did the country proud by finishing 5th in the Final, which saw Justin Gatlin shock the world by beating Usain Bolt to the finish line in what was the Jamaican’s last professional race.

The man regarded as Bolt’s successor in the athletics world, Wayde van Niekerk, went about his business with ease, comfortably advancing in the Men’s 200m and 400m Heats. He’ll look to emulate his world record-breaking performance in Tuesday’s 400m Final, while he’ll be out to impress in Wednesday’s 200m Semi-Finals.

Another Rio Gold medallist, Caster Semenya, took to the track in the final of the Women’s 1500m, a race she wasn’t wholly familiar with. Her inexperience looked apparent, as she found herself in last place heading into the final lap. However, Semenya turned on the afterburners during the final 400m to finish in third place.

Her Bronze was South Africa’s third medal of the Championships, putting the country 4th on the table at the time of writing, but there are bound to be plenty more still to come.


Sources: Rayder Media
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Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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