After two scintillating Meetings on 01 and 08 March at Ruimsig (Johannesburg) and Tuks (Tshwane) respectively, the Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series final moves to Dal Josaphat Stadium this coming Thursday, 22 March and it promises to be yet another high octane, explosive 90 minutes of athletics action.
Semenya chasing SA 1500m record
She is in fine form, having claimed the South African 1000m record at the second Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series Meeting at Tuks on 08 March, before winning first the SA 1500m title in 4:10.68, and then running the fastest time in South Africa for the 800m to claim that title too clocking at 1:57.80. Now she has her sights set on the SA 1500m record that still stands behind the name of one Zola Budd Pieterse who ran 4:01.81 in 1984. Chasing her will be newly crowned SA 5000m champion, Dominique Scott who set new SA records in the 1500m and 3000m on the indoor circuit. Scott ran 4:07.25 and 8:41.18 respectively.
Sub 4-minute mile on the cards
A deep field lines up in the men’s mile and there is a distinct possibility that more than one athlete can break the magical 4-minute barrier. Headlining the field is 20-year-old Ryan Mphahlele who brought his Personal Best in the 1500m down from 3:44.03 to 3:41.65 at the first Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series Meeting in Ruimsig on 01 March, before breaking 8 minutes for the 3000m at the second Meeting at Tuks on 08 March.
Newly crowned SA 5000m champion and SA 1500m silver medalist, Jerry Motsau, former SA 1500m champions Dumisane Hlaselo and Flavio Sehole are also in the line-up and have a point to prove after not performing as expected at the national championships in the 1500m.
Long Jump Men: Samaai comes home
Ruswahl Samaai loves competing in the Western Cape. His two national titles were won at Stellenbosch in 2015 and 2016. Dal Josaphat in Paarl, his home town, should provide a big support base for the 26-year-old World Championship bronze medalist. Samaai, who won the silver medal in the men’s Long Jump at the SA Championships on 17 March will be up against bronze medalist, Zarck Visser and 2008 Olympic silver medalist, Khotso “the Crocodile” Mokoena. All are more than capable of going over 8m and coming close to 8.20m if not further which should make the men’s Long Jump a titanic and tight battle.
100m Men: SA Championships revisited
Akani Simbine missed out on defending his 100m national title after withdrawing from the semi-finals with a hamstring twinge. 2016 SA 100m champion, Henricho Bruintjies who hails from Paarl, had to settle for bronze, while Simon Magakwe won his seventh national 100m title after a two-year absence. Bruintjies would like nothing more than to win in front of his home crowd. Simbine is looking for a good showing before heading Down Under for the Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast, while Makagwe wants the scalp of Simbine. Throw in Western Province’s Roscoe Engel who has run the second fastest 100m in South Africa in 2018 and you have a race that will have the spectators on the edge of their seats.
Mr. YouTube to lead the men’s javelin
Julius Yego became famous for learning to throw the Javelin by watching YouTube videos, hence the nickname. The Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series Final will be his major competition before the Commonwealth Games. Expect a big throw from a man who has gone beyond 90m on two occasions already and who boasts an average of 87.54m.
Athletics South Africa President, Aleck Skhosana expressed his and the board’s satisfaction of the series, saying it had contributed immensely in bringing the sport to a new level. “With international athletes once again gracing our shores and South Africa’s finest showing that they can compete with the best, we are very proud of where the sport currently is and where it is going. We have no doubt that the third and final Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series Meeting will be just as exciting and explosive as the first two meetings.”
EVENT INFORMATION: Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix Series
The Liquid Telecom Athletix Grand Prix is more than just a show, it enables athletes the opportunity to compete against South African and global talent; for them to be nurtured and invested in, so that they have the potential of becoming green and gold medalists.
Dates, Venue and Start Times:
|Thursday, 22 March 2018||Dal Josaphat Stadium, Paarl|
|Time:||+- 16:45 – 17:30 / Pre Programme|
|Time:||17:45 – 19:00 / Main Programme|
Main Pavilion Tickets
|Standard Ticket:||R 100 each|
|Children under 16 years of age:||R 50 each|
Open Stand/Grass Banks
|Standard Ticket:||R 50 each|
|Children under 16 years of age:||R 50 each|
ONLINE TICKET SALES are open and can be purchased via www.webtickets.co.za
Tickets can also be purchased at the gate of each event.
Visit the event’s Facebook page for regular announcements.
ABOUT LIQUID TELECOM
Liquid Telecom is a leading communications services and solutions provider across 13 countries in Eastern, central and Southern Africa that serves carrier, enterprise and retail customers with high-speed, reliable connectivity and digital services.
It has built Africa’s largest independent fibre network, spanning over 50,000km, and operates state-of-the-art data centres in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Nairobi, with a combined 6,800 square meters of rack space.
This is in addition to leading cloud-based services, such as Microsoft Office365 and Microsoft Azure, and innovative digital content provision, including Netflix, NBA, TED and Kwese Play.
Through this combined offering, Liquid Telecom is enhancing customers’ experience on their digital journey.
About Athletics South Africa:
Athletics South Africa (ASA) is the national governing body for the sport of athletics (including Track and Field, Cross Country, Road Running and Race Walking) in South Africa, is a member of the IAAF and the Confederation of African Athletics. The association is based in Johannesburg.