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Olympian Olivier races to another second spot in Europe
- Updated: July 1, 2013
By Mark Etheridge
Mr Consistency, Andre Olivier was the best of the South Africans on show at Sunday’s IAAF Diamond League Sainsbury’s Grand Prix meeting at Birmingham, England.
London Olympian Olivier picked up another second spot behind the in-form Mohammed Aman of Ethiopia in the men’s 800mÔÇª the only difference being that this was the first time in five races that the South African had failed to break the 1min 45min barrier in Europe this year.
Aman led from the front to win in 1:45:19 as Olivier was good for second in 1:45.64.
“The race was really weird,” Olivier told Road to Rio 2016. “It felt like we were running against a headwind the whole time so you can see there were no good times.
“In fact, Aman told be after the race that to him, it felt like he ran a 1:42, but I guess this happens sometimes. “My race still went to plan as I sat on Aman and waited for the last 100m. I closed the gap on hiim but I really died the last 50m. Anyway, Lausanne on Thursday is next for me and I’m excited for that one.”
In the men’s long jump, Olivier’s fellow Olympian, Khotso Mokena is still battling to string together any form of consistent quality. Russia’s Aleksandr Menkov won with an 8.27m from Olympic champion Greg Rutherford (8.11) with Mokoena again failing to beat the eight-metre mark with a 7.90m.
National champion this year, Zarck Visser was also in action and ended eighth with a 7.69m effort.
Another South African Olympian in action was Lehann Fourie who ended eighth in his 110m hurdles heat in 14.18sec as he continues to recover from an injury setback.
Meanwhile, junior star and Zone VI Games sprint champion Akani Simbine was in action in Belgium at the weekend. He came first in both his semi-final and final with times of 10.38 and 10.32 respectively. Next up for him is a meeting in Cork, Ireland on Tuesday.