SOUTH AFRICAN stars landed back from Kenya this afternoon, oozing with confidence.
Team SA won 9 medals at theWorld Athletics U20 Championships hosted at the Moi International Sports Complex Stadium in Kenya.
The competition saw(29 men and 25 women) from South Africa taking part in the action.
South Africa’s men’s 4x100m champions and world record busters led the arrival delegation at the OR Tambo International Airport, which was beaming with parents and well-wishers.
One of the world record busters team members said, he would like to give thanks to their coach and the country for their support in these difficult times SA faces.
“For us we needed to bring that positivity and put back the smiles on our fellow countrymen, especially SA having performed poorly in the Tokyo Olympics,” he said.
The proud SA under 20 team members were welcomed by James Moloi, the President of Athletics South Africa and Shireen Noble, the Vice President.
“This has been a successful day at the office for Team SA today. The grit and determination seen in the day’s competition was a marvel to watch in our athletes. We congratulate all athletes who won us medals, “said Moloi.
Paul Gorries, athletics coach said it was a marvel to see his team do well at the championships.
“Its never easy but the athlete’s work harder to compete and to break a record is a motivating factor,” says Gorries.
He also said this is a lesson, ‘I told them not to focus on how others performed at the Tokyo Olympics but the onus is now on them to do their job and boy, they did’, he said with tongue-in-cheek.
Majority of them are under 19, and this means Gorries can work on the transition from juniors to seniors and this will only happen if the team does get that much needed support.
The Tukkies coach says: ”We do have talent in abundance in this country, it’s how we manage that talent and monitor it, that’s all. We also have to factor in females to level the playing field, “says Gorrie.
Image Roger SEDRES- World Athletics (South Africa’s men’s 4x100m champions and world record busters at the World Athletics U20 Athletics Championships at the Kasarani International Stadium).