Fourie into semis | SASCOC - SASCOC

Fourie into semis

Lehann Fourie, 25, on Saturday became the second of the South Africans to qualify for the final at the World Indoor Athletics Championships in Istanbul, Turkey, writes Mark Etheridge.

Competing in the 60-metre hurdles, Fourie placed second in Heat One of the event, clocking 7.67 seconds, just 0.03sec off his season’s best time. He was third quickest out of the blocks, although Algeria’s Othman Hadj Lazib was quickest with an illegal 0.079sec that saw him being disqualified.

World junior champion Pascal Martinot-Lagarde won Fourie’s heat, ending 0.01sec quicker.

The qualification rounds featured four heats. Fourie, originally from Pretoria but based in the United States, will now line up lane four of the second semi-final on Sunday morning. Ten of the semi-finalists have quicker times than Fourie.

“Always fun running in the Green and Gold.. even better when you can do it more than once in a weekend,” Fourie said on his Facebook website page after the race.

Fourie has struggled with hamstring worries over the last while and says it’s again feeling a bit tight. And the fact that the team have no travelling physio on their trip doesn’t make things any easier.

“But I’m I’m pretty positive,” he told Road to London 2012 later on Saturday. “I was just running for a spot and the same tomorrow running for a top four spot in the semi-final. I’m sure I will do well in the final as well if all goes well!”

Britain’s Andrew Pozzi was the quickest qualifier with a personal best 7.61 win in the second of three heats. Runner-up was defending champion Liu Xiang of China.

The only other South African involved in a final on Sunday will be Elroy Gelant in the men’s 3000m final. This after Burger Lambrechts failed to move past the qualifying round in the men’s shot-put.