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Quiet day for athletes

Team South Africa failed to add any more medals on day two of the IAAF World Youth Athletics Championships in Lille, France on Thursday.

Cold and windy conditions again dominating most of the day and one man whose mood would mirror the weather conditions was Tiaan Mouton. The fastest 400-metre youth hurdler in the world this year, he failed to get past the semi-finals in this event.

He ended sixth in the semi-final, crossing the line in 52.54sec, well off the 51.24 he ran earlier in the season. There was at least some consolation in the fact that team-mate Constant Pretorius won his heat, with a new best time of 51.57sec.┬áHe’ll now be up against Ibrahim Mohammed Saleh (KSA), Shota Madokoro (JPN) and Omar McLeod (JAM) in Friday’s final.┬áTheir times were 51.59sec, 51.72sec and 51.72sec respectively.

Joining Pretorius from the other heat will be Russian athlete Egor Kuznetsov (51.31sec) and Ken Kirui Tele from Kenya (51.92sec).

The octathlon ended on Thursday with Lloyd Greeff added more great performances to his list to end in 11th place overall with 5623 points, 10 points shy of the SA record.

On Wednesday he had recorded PB’s in the 100m, long jump, shot put and 110m hurdles.┬áHis great form continued on Thursday and helped him improve on his 5620 at the Yellow Pages SA Championships in Durban this year.

In Thursday’s four events, the octathlon started with the 110m hurdles where Greeff ran a good race to finish in the top three in 14.92sec.┬áIn the high jump he finished first in his group, clearing 1.92m and then went on to fail at 1.95m adding 731 points to his collection of 3764 points.

In the javelin he finished in eighth after his best attempt reached 47.32m. The winner, Jake Stein (AUS) threw 59.65m. Greeff collected 549 points with this attempt and moved into eighth overall.

The 1000m octathlon came to a conclusion as the rain started falling. By this time Greeff was showing his exhaustion and finished the race in 3:08.99, adding 579 points to his overall tally.

Australian Jake Stein won the overall title with 6491 points followed by Sweden’s Fedrick Ekholm (6127).

In other events Sergeal Petersen finished in fifth position in the semi-final of the 100m. He was the only South African in this event after Bradley Britz had earlier torn a hamstring and forced to stop competing at the championships. Petersen finished in 10.89sec behind Mohammad Sico Ibrahim (KSA) in 10.78sec.

Jamaican athlete O’Dail Todd claimed top spot in 10.67sec followed by Michael-Meba Zeze from France in 10.69sec.┬áKazuma Oseto finished third (10.75sec).

Our athletes in early action on Friday are: Philippa vd Merwe (200m heats) and Hendrick Khumalo & Fana Mofokeng in the boys 200m heats. In the afternoon session it’s Albert Janki & Sabelo Ndlovu in the triple jump, Andries vd Merwe and Tiaan Smit in the 110m hurdles semi-final, Somari Els in the discus┬á and Thato Makhafola in the 800m semi-final.


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