Hurdles specialist Rikenette Steenkamp brought a close to South Africa's campaign on the final day of the IAAF World Championships in Doha, Qatar on Sunday.
The last member of the SA team to compete at the biennial spectacle, Steenkamp finished seventh in her 100m semi-final over the barriers. Though she clocked a respectable time of 12.96, she was eliminated ahead of the final.
While the national team were unable to find a place on the podium, multiple athletes narrowly missed out on medals at the 10-day showpiece.
Sprinter Akani Simbine finished fourth in the men's 100m final and anchored the SA relay team to fifth place in the 4x100m final. The relay quartet, which also included Simon Magakwe, Clarence Munyai and Thando Dlodlo, set an African record of 37.65* seconds in the heats.
In the men's long jump, defending champion Luvo Manyonga and countryman Ruswahl Samaai both put up fights before settling for fourth and fifth positions respectively.
Also taking the battle to the international elite, Stephen Mokoka finished fifth in the men's marathon, crossing the line just 18 seconds outside a place on the podium.
“Clearly, this is not been why we went to Doha for, but we accept the reality that we come back empty-handed. It would not be wise to cast judgements because we must first receive feedback from the team management, their national, personal coaches and the athletes.
“Only then can we then review and go back to the drawing board to map the way forward to the Olympics next year,” said Aleck Skhosana, the President of Athletics South Africa.
* Record subject to standard ratification processes
Issued By ASA