Athletes take centre stage this weekend

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Athletics will take centre stage in Stellenbosch in Western Cape this weekend when Athletics South Africa (ASA) stages the next instalment in the fast-growing Yellow Pages Ultimate Athletics series and the South African Multi Events Championships.

The Yellow Pages event will be showcased on the Coetzenburg track tonight from 6.

The Multi Events, which is expected to attract athletes from across the continent, will be held at the same venue today and tomorrow.

The events will start at 10.30am and finish at 5pm on both days.

Athletes are using the Yellow Pages series to qualify for the World Championships in Osaka, Japan, in August.

Molatelo Malehopo, ASA's development manager, said for the athletes to qualify for the world event they should take part in at least two Yellows Pages meets in their specialist events, plus in the South African senior track and field championships.

This is the sixth leg of the Yellow Pages competition and the last one will be held in Tshwane on March 9.

Renowned athlete Mbulaeni Mulaudzi, who was expected to feature in Stellenbosch today, has withdrawn because of injury.

The spotlight will fall on Boy Soke in the 5 000m after the athlete from Free State came first in the senior men's 12km race in the Southern Region's cross-country championships in Malawi a fortnight ago.

Tshamano Setone, who came third in the 1 5 000 event in Malawi, is also expected to shine in Stellenbosch.

Today's event will mark the long-awaited return of South Africa's top sprinter Geraldine Pillay.

The 29-year-old has been training in Jamaica alongside world record holder Assafa Powel.

Pillay is likely to break Cindy Stewart's unbeaten run in the 100m sprint in the Yellow Pages series.