Courtney Westley
Photo Credit: Rowing South Africa

Pop the champagne, SA’s done it again! Star rower Courtney Westley has earned her first Olympic placement as of this week after giving it her all at the African Champs Regatta!


Global (27 October 2023) — The flights to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games are getting fuller and fuller as Team South Africa continues to book spots. Following the Springboks Women’s Sevens squad recently making their first-ever Olympic placements earlier this month, star rower Courtney Westley has also earned her first Olympic opportunity as of this week.

Courtney Westley and fellow-rower Lifa Hlongwa faced serious pressure as the hope of South Africa at the African Champs Regatta (the Olympic and Paralympic qualifiers for Africa) in Tunisia, and both young talents put up fierce battles right until the very end.

After making it to their respective A Finals (Westley for the Women’s Single Scull and Hlongwa for the PR1 Men’s Single Scull), Westley rowed her way to victory by coming in second place against Algeria’s Nihed Benchadli. Hlongwa gave Tunisia’s waters a full go of determination, and despite missing the Paralympic qualification mark this time, this has hardly dulled SA’s support for the inspiring young man who has loads more opportunities ahead of him.

As for Westley, she certainly achieved the things she values deeply—making South Africa proud and being part of the sport’s growth, especially for female athletes.

Speaking to the University of Pretoria before her big world events (where she is a student), she shared, “The most important thing to me is to make South Africa proud and play my part in growing women’s rowing.” 

The BSc Geography and Environmental Science student is definitely studying the most fitting discipline because she is going to put South Africa on the map for rowing come 2024.

Sources: Various (Linked Above)
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Ashleigh Nefdt is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Ashleigh's favourite stories have always seen the hidden hero (without the cape) come to the rescue. As a journalist, her labour of love is finding those everyday heroes and spotlighting their spark - especially those empowering women, social upliftment movers, sustainability shakers and creatives with hearts of gold. When she's not working on a story, she's dedicated to her canvas or appreciating Mother Nature.

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