- Bezuidenhout, Smit off to flyer at Better Ball Challenge
- Thousands of women prepare for running Challenge
- SA’s team named to do Fed Cup duty in Lithuania
- Hawtrey’s passing a big loss for SA cycling
- Nienaber back with a bang, targets another Nomads title
- Seboko best of the bunch in uphill battle in Uganda
- Davids doubles up in Summer Series
- Elkington eclipses opposition at Loch Ness
- Hurdler Steenkamp winding up for a big one
- Olympic champion’s Epic win, big-hearted women’s triumph
Sunette: Sky’s the limit
- Updated: August 19, 2011
By Mark Etheridge
Sunette Viljoen was basking in the Chinese sunshine on Friday but more importantly basking in her “extra-special” new South African javelin record.
After a frustrating season where she was more consistent than crackerjack, Viljoen finally cracked the big one at the World Student Games in Shenzhen, China, pegging the spear at a new personal best, national and African record of 66.47 metres to take gold.
Equally importantly she defended the title she won in Belgrade two years ago.
A jubilant Viljoen told Road to London 2012 on Friday: “They say in order to reach the top of the mountain you must climb every rock ÔÇô well I have climbed lots and lots of rocks in the Diamond League this year and learned lots of things that were lacking in my armor.
“So the last three weeks at home in South Africa I’ve been arming myself so to speak for this month. My goal was to win gold as well as defending my World Student Games title.
“I prepared to the very best of my ability and as they say “the javelin took care of itself”. I knew anything was possible but to break my SA record was extra-special.”
The big one came with her first legal throw and her other three legitimate throws were recorded as 57.46, 60.36 and 58.82m. Making the day even more special for Team SA was the fact that fellow Potchefstrom athlete Justine Robbeson gave team two podium places as she took the bronze medal with a 59.78 effort with her penultimate throw.
But while her javelin might soar into the heavens, Viljoen was quick to make sure her feet were firmly on terra firma. “It’s back to the office today for training. Daegu [World Championships venue in South Korea] is a new page, a new challenge and a new competition. Having the gold medal in the bag was my first aim. The second is to make the final in Daegu and with Sunette Viljoen in the final the sky is truly the limit. I’m not sticking my neck out and saying I’ll win a medal but anything can happen on the day of the final.”