Netshifhefhe aims to win

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Top South African runner Bethuel Netshifhefhe will take part in the Nedbank Matha Series Half-Marathon which is hosted by Limpopo Athletics (LA) at Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane on a two-pronged mission.

Firstly, he wants to win the series to be in a right frame of mind going into the Soweto Marathon on November 4.

Secondly, he is eager to run in front of his supporters in his home province on Saturday.

The reigning Two Oceans Marathon champion, who hails from the Venda village of Khakhangwa, is the firm favourite to win the race in Polokwane.

"I don't think it will be an easy race because I expect a number of good runners on the day," said the 33-year-old who came second in the South African Marathon in Port Elizabeth in April.

"I have been training hard to prepare for both the Saturday's race and the Soweto event. Winning in Polokwane will go a long way in motivating me for the Soweto race. I'm also looking forward to run in my own province."

Another Limpopo-born athlete, who will be gracing the streets of Polokwane on the day, is Johannes Kekana who is from Zebediela.

Attlee Maponyane, LA's president, said though the registration for the race has been coming in at snail's pace, he remains confident they will have a good turnout on the day.

"We have been inundated with calls from runners from around the province who have assured that they will register late," said Maponyane yesterday.

"We should consider that our province is big and it is expensive for runners to drive from their respective areas to come and register and drive back home."

The main event starts at 7am and there will also be a 5km fun run on the day