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Olympian Coolboy looks to get back to winning ways
- Updated: January 31, 2013
London Olympian Coolboy Ngamole will be out to make up for his disappointing Games experience by winning a second SA marathon title in Oudtshoorn on Sunday.
Ngamole won the title in 2012 when he crossed the line in 2hr 13min 18sec ahead of 2011 Soweto Marathon winner Michael Mazibuko, and will race for the top spot and another national title this weekend.┬áHowever, after a disappointing performance at the Olympic Games in August 2012 (Ngamole failed to finish the race) he is hoping to do well on Sunday. ÔÇ£I really want to improve on my 2012 performances and see myself back at the Olympics in 2016 in Rio,ÔÇØ said Ngomale.
ÔÇ£I believe in myself and I believe that I can win again, not forgetting that it is a competition and everybody will be prepared.┬á It will definitely be challenging,ÔÇØ said the defending champion.
But there’s no shortage of challengers as four men from last year’s top 10 will race for the coveted title.┬áSeun Moleshioa from Athletics Mpumalanga finished fourth overall last year in 2:17:19 while Sithyilo Diko from Western Province crossed the line shortly afterthat┬á in 2:17:39.┬á Also there will be Pule Hlabahlaba and Thidiso Bosiu, sixth and ninth place finishers in 2012.
SA Marathon record holder Gert Thys will be in the line-up again.┬áThys, from Western Province, finished the race in 2:23:33 in 19th position last year.┬áThe 41 year-old set the national record in 1999 in Tokyo, when he won in 2:06:33.
David Ngakane, an individual entry from Central Gauteng Athletics, and Gauteng North’s Benedict Moeng should also not be left out of the equation as they also ran good times in the past year.┬áMoeng won the Petro SA Marathon in Mossel Bay at the end of September, setting up a new personal best of 2:14:16. Ngakane ran the Mangyongdae Prize Marathon in North Korea on 12 April, finishing sixth in 2:15:59.┬á His personal best is 2:15:31 at the same marathon in 2011.
This will be the first year where athletes will get recognition from the South African Masters Athletics (SAMA) as they have joined forces with Athletics South Africa to combine the Championships. All master athletes (35 years and older) will thus be entered into the age category according to their age on race day.
The championships will be one of the events used to select the team for the World Championships in Moscow in August.