Cape Town – Western Province Athletics(WPA) claimed 6th place overall with 11 medals taking 2 team bronze medals, 5 individual golds, two individual silvers and two individual bronze medals, at the ASA Cross Country championships held at the Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth on Saturday, 8 September 2018.
The team, consisting of 36 men and 27 women, produced a mix of tight battles and some dominant performances in the cold and wet Nelson Mandela Bay with Christiane Adriaanse taking the overall win in the master women, 4km race and first in her category of women between the ages of 40 and 44 with a time of 14.39 minutes with compatriots Anneline Roffey third overall (second in her category of women between the ages of 35 and 39) with a time of 14.56 and Bulelwa Simae 5th with a time of 15.21
The masters ladies were showing the youngsters how to do it in the wet and muddy course with Mariette Strauss taking 1st place in her category W55-59/4 with a time of 17.33, Olga Howard also 1st in the 60-64 category with a time of 17.43, Nancy Will taking 1st in her category W65-69/4 of with a time of 19.15 and Aileen (Pixie) Sparg also took 1st place in her category W70-74/4 in a time of 23.16.
In the master men, Shawn Abrahams (27.24) snatched a bronze medal in the 8km 45-49 category. Oscar Coetzee (26.33) and Siyabonga Sakwe (26.34) were 4th and 5th respectively in the 35 – 39 category. Vakalisa Kopolo ( 27.43) was 8th in the 40-44 category. Robert Lindsay (25.30) and Les Chivell (25.45) were 8th and 9th in the 6km 60-65 category.
#TeamWPA (Siyabonga Sakwe, Oscar Coetzee, Christiane Adriaanse and Anneline Roffey) took bronze in the Senior Men & Women relay (4 members - 2 x Men & 2 x Women run 1 lap of 2km each) in a time of 27.50.
Other notable performances were from Anthony Timoteus who took bronze in the senior men 4km race with a time of 11.55 in a tightly contested race with compatriots Ashley Smith (12.02) and Bruce-Lynn Damons (12.06) missing out on a medal when they came 4th and 5th respectively in the under 23 category, with the overall winner Ryan Mphahlele (CGA) earning a comfortable victory finishing 19 seconds clear of his nearest opponent.
In the women 4km races, another U-23 athlete, Marne Mentz (AFS), also beat her senior opponents to win the women's race in 14:20.
Central Gauteng Athletics (CGA) swept all three podium places in the senior men 10km race with Precious Mashele crossing the line in 29:28, finishing 19 seconds ahead of teammate Jeromy Andreas (29:47), with Kabelo Seboko taking third position in 29:51. WPA’s Sibusiso Madikizela came in 29th position with team mates Danzil Paulse 32nd , Siviwe Nkombi 35th, Lukhanyo Nobakada 42nd and Akhona Makila 69th.
Defending champion Glenrose Xaba also retained her crown in the 10km Senior Women, after being locked in a late sprint against Kesa Molotsane. Xaba won the battle for Athletics Gauteng North (AGN) in 35:16, with Molotsane finishing second for Athletics Free State (AFS) in 35:17. Jenet Mbhele of KwaZulu-Natal Athletics (KZNA) settled for third in 36:07 after putting up an early fight.
Ngconde Matwebu (AFS) took the 8km Junior Men title in 24:17, edging out Dais Malebane (AGN) by less than a second in a dramatic race and Tyler Beling won the 6km Junior Women race by nearly half a minute in 21:33.
WPA Vice President, Jakes Jacobs congratulated the medal winners and the never die attitude of the athletes, “The athletes gave it their best and we can only grow from our performances. We would like to thank all the participants for representing WPA with pride.”
Photo Credit : Roger Sedres