As an expatriate South African who has lived in Canada for 49 years, the reinstatement of South Africa in the Relay was the highlight of the Olympics for me, and the sight of Oscar Pistorius pounding down the track caused my heart to swell with pride.
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Team SA delighted at relay team’s inclusion in Games final
- Updated: August 9, 2012
Team South Africa at the 2012 Olympic Games in London are delighted that the men’s 4×400-metre track relay team has been re-instated into the final of the event.
The heats of the event were contested on Thursday morning and after the first leg South African runner Ofentse Mogawane was sent to the ground coming into the home straight after a collision with a Kenyan runner during the second of four legs.
Mogawane was unable to hand over the baton to third-leg runner Oscar Pistorius and the team failed to complete the race.
The Kenyan team first appealed to the Jury of Appeal for a ruling on the matter.
Team South Africa themselves then lodged an appeal giving their reasons as follows:
1.) That there was obstruction of the SA athlete and impeding his process (rule 163.2 IAAF)
2.) That there was obstruction by the Kenyan athlete
Following review, the Jury of Appeal accepted the appeal and agreed that the SA relay team shall be advanced to the final as the ninth team. The final will be run on Friday, 10 August.
Following Mogawane’s fall, the team will now include LJ van Zyl as a replacement runner and the sequence of the runners is yet to be decided.
Said Team SA Chef de Mission, Ms Patience Shikwambana: “We are happy that, after due process and the correct protocol were followed, justice has been seen to be done and our men will take their rightful place in the final. We have no doubt that they will be giving their all in the final and do their best to win another medal for South Africa.”