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SA team still seeking first medal in Taipei

Taipei

By Mark Etheridge

South Africa are still hunting their first medal at the 29th Summer Universiade in Taipei, Taiwan, after six days of competition.

Big Jason van Rooyen was the first South African in an athletics final as he took part in the men’s shot put.

He threw a best of 17.99 metres on another hot Taipei night, but that was only good for 11th as Francisco Belo’s 20.86 heave won gold for Portugal.

Also in track and field action, South Africa’s two male hammer throwers both went through to the final. Tshepang Makhethe led the way with a 66.39m, and Renaldo Frechou joined him with a 60.84m in the second of two qualifying groups.

Javelin ace Jo-Ané van Dyk qualified for the final with a 54.55m effort, but had an anxious wait. Only one thrower in her group threw the automatic qualifying distance of 58.00m, and she was the last in her group to progress. In the other group, not one thrower managed the automatic distance.

Long jump action saw Rio Olympian Lynique Prinsloo through to the final as she ended fourth in her group. Automatic qualifying distance was 6.30m, but Pretoria’s Prinsloo only needed a 6.18m to secure her spot in the final.

Not so fortunate was fellow long jumper Samantha Pretorius, her 5.80m only ninth in her group and not far enough to make Thursday’s final.

Staying with the field events, Mpho Links leapt 2.15m on his second attempt to also make the final in the men’s long jump. Automatic height was 2.23, but Link’s height was fourth-best in Group A. Final is on Friday.

On the track both the team’s 1500m athletes were in action. In the second heat, Jerry Motsau ended eighth in 3:49.22, while Rantso Mokopane ran 3:49.84 to end second in the final heat. Only the latter went through to the final.

Anuschka Nice just missed out on advancing to the women’s 800m when she ended third in her heat with a time of 2:06.38, as only the first three in each heat went through.

In football action, South Africa’s men’s footballers drew their Group D match with South Korea. Defender Phuthego Mabitsela scored their first-half goal, and although the team went down 1-2 early in the second half, Mabitsela’s fellow defender Lawrence Ntswane equalised in the 85th minute.

The result saw SA getting the first point in their group. They ended fourth and last in the group and failed to progress.


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