Mkenku leaves her rivals panting

Linda Moreotsene

Linda Moreotsene

Seventeen-year-old sprinter Constance Mkenku, who won the 100m and 200m women's races at the South African Junior and Youth Championships held in Tshwane, says she always had a dream of dominating the events.

Many who saw Mkenku at the finish line on the way to winning the 200m gold at the event, agreed that the Free State athlete has a great future ahead of her.

She was one of the 2 000 athletes from around the country who converged at Pilditch Stadium to try and qualify for the African Youth Championships and the World Championships in Beijing later this year.

Mkenku did qualify, although her time of 11,33 was just outside the 11,25, the national record, but she was satisfied with her performance. She also did not beat the 22,76 national record of the 200m.

"Before the race, I knew that things will not all go my way. Although I won, I am a bit disappointed with the 200m which I think was slow at 23,63. The 100m was great as I got a new personal best," Mkenku said.

Free State athletes did very well in key events, with Kagisho Kumbane also winning the 100m and the 200m dashes for the first time. Also, it has been a while since black athletes won these events simultaneously. Free State's Dumisani Hlaselo won the men's 1 500m with a personal best time of 3min 47seconds.


Men - junior 100m 1.Kagisho Kumbane 2.Duncan Mclean ; 3.Gavin Sadler

Women - junior 100m 1. Constance Mkenku; 2. Christy Coetzee ; 3. Lorinda van Loggerenberg

Women - junior long jump 1.Christy Coetzee 2.Bianca Erasmus 3.Marni Stevens

Men - youth 110m hurdles 1.Abednigo Mamuschi ; 2.Etiene Grobler; 3.Kobus Moolman