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Not one, but two teams of South African relay runners have booked their places in the upcoming Olympic Games!


Global (06 May 2024) — After the thrilling news that South Africa’s Lythe Pillay booked his spot for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris thanks to his need-for-speed-smashing 400m qualifying sprint, more good news from the tracks has raced in for South Africa thanks to our relay runners!

During the World Athletics Relays event in the Bahamas, South Africa’s men’s national relay runners Gardeo Isaacs, Wade van Niekerk, Zakithi Nene and Lythe Pillay swiped a silver victory during the opening round of the 4x400m on Sunday.


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This meant not only that they were the second-fastest overall for the initial heats (with a striking time of 2:59:76), but also booked their team’s place at the upcoming Olympic Games thanks to their finals qualification!

As of today, the team, with Antonie Nortjie stepping in for Wade, finished off the World Relays with a final silver and a time of 3:00.75 after narrowly missing out on the gold secured by Botswana, who had a time of 2:59:11. In a full comeback moment, it marked SA’s first medal from the World Relays event since 2019.

But, they were not the only South African team to make us proud!

Another South African relay team, Bayanda Walaza, Benjamin Richardson, Bradley Nkoana, and Akani Simbine, successfully won their heat for the 4x100m, meaning that we will have two teams of relay runners heading off to the Olympics!

Hope is still on the cards for South Africa’s mixed 4x400m relay runners who claimed bronze for their race.

“Congratulations to our three squads for a job well done. We have shown depth in how we substituted some athletes for today’s races and it will assist our coaches as they continue to prepare for the Olympic Games in Paris, France. The various preparation camps have clearly worked for us in this instance,” says James Moloi, Athletics South Africa President.

“The excitement is that our mixed relay squad still has a chance and has just less than two months to try and qualify for the remaining spots for Paris. Finishing third again gives us the needed confidence to take our fight forward, to find that qualifier. We will leave it to the coaches to map the way forward and emphasise on better finishing times for the Olympics.” 

Sources: Athletics South Africa 
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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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