Ruben battles in the wet | SASCOC - SASCOC

Ruben battles in the wet

Ruben Ramolefi, South Africa’s best steeplechaser, finished 10th in the pouring rain in the event┬áin Paris on Friday night, with the highlight of the Golden League meet being Usain Bolt’s 9.79 seconds in the 100 metres.

Ramolefi is part of the OPEX 2012 Road To London squad, but laboured to a 8min 26.54sec finish, which is some 10 seconds off his best time for the year. Conditions, it has to be said, were difficult in the wet, and the race was won by the home favourite Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad, a rare victory in this discipline for a European.

The Kenyan Ezekiel Kemboi was outsprinted down the final straight and had to be content with second spot behind the Frenchman, who must be one of the favourites to break the African stranglehold on the event at the upcoming World Championships in Berlin.

Ramolefi, the only South African competing in the Golden League meet, was never in with a realistic chance of finishing on the podium, and given that he’s on the wrong side of 30, his name as part of the 2012 elite squad for the London Games continues to raise eyebrows.

There was plenty of rain but the lightning came in the form of┬á Bolt, who roared to a meet record 9.79 seconds in winning the men’s 100m. The Olympic champion and world record holder over 100 and 200m was slow out the blocks, as usual, but once into full stride stretched away from the field to win impressively.


  1. lindie

    August 15, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    The comments on ruben ramolefi’s performance in france on 17 july 2009 are unfounded and amounts to hate speech. He is a sportsman of absolute charisma, character and strong discipline.He represents a presence on any track which no other sportsman in SA can compare with.SA has not deliver any other better representative for this discipline in sport, on what basis are these comments about “eyebrows being raised” about his going to London in 2012?

    Ruben has performed well this whole year through,he has broken and set a new national record earlier this year.On what basis are these comments made about “eyebrows being raised” for his going to London2012? Ruben’s overall performance in 2009 exceed by far that of his competetors in the upcoming IAAF WC in Berlin.

    Ruben has put to shame competitors way below 30years of age, to mention the likes of Jukka Keskisalo, the reigning european champion, when he set a new national record in Monaco this year. The IAAF WC host the best of each country, the best of Spain, France, Australia and Sweden, in 3000m/steeplechase, are over 30 yet qualified over their younger country mates for these World Championships. Furthermore, Ruben’s time has been faster than that of his IAAF WC 2009 competitors over 30years of age, to mention a few in the likes of Bouabdellah Tahri(France dob-1978),Eliseo Martin (Spain dob-1973), Jose Luis Blanco (Spain dob-1975), Per Jacobsen (Sweden dob-1977), Youcef Abdi(Australia dob-1977). What does age has to do with it? The presence of these sportsmen in the IAAF WC, representing their countries, proves that age has got nothing to do with it.

    The comments about Ruben’s age raising eyebrows for his inclusion to London 2012 are unfounded and a reflection of poorly researched journalism and it is in bad taste that a country’s reporter and media would defame their only 3000m s/c male representative against the World in such manner.The reporter who compiled this report should be ashamed of yourself, more especially since Ruben silenced your deconstructive criticizm when he set a new national record within two weeks thereafter.

    Ruben is by far the best qualified and hardest earned candidate for London 2012 and until SA can deliver a better alternative for the disciline of 3000m s/c for men, reporters like these should hold their peace or research properly. This report is a shame and embarrassment to SA journalism and if there is any eyebrows to be raised, it is against the quality of reporters and the competence of reporters such as these, who write these.

    Ruben is coming home with the gold in 2012, you stick around and stay alive, so that you can watch that sace and stand corrected,ready to swallow your words.

  2. sebastian

    August 19, 2009 at 10:03 am

    indeed this is a poor form of journalism that can not be accepted.

    i’m not sure what a journalist is doing in this specific field of sports when he does believe that being able to break records is closly linked to age.

    what it is linked to surely is mental determination, the will to excel! with a new national record in 2009 ruben ramolefi has exactly proven that…

    learn and watch in 2012 is all i can say further about that topic!

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