SA juniors improve at champs

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

Mcelwa Nchabeleng

South African athletes pulled off an improved display at the 12th IAAF World Junior Championships that ended in Poland on Sunday.

The South Africans won three medals, one silver and two bronze, and finished 21st overall against 166 countries. In 2006 in China they won a gold medal.

Their 4x100m men's relay team, comprising Johannes Mogaba, Roscoe Engel, Patrick Vosloo and Wilhelm van der Vyver, won a bronze medal.

They also set a new South African junior record of 39,59 seconds. The previous record was 40,16 which they set in Zimbabwe shortly before their departure to Poland.

Van der Vyver also won a silver medal in the 100m, while Andre Olivier won bronze in the 800m. Seven local athletes were also in the top eight of the finals in their respective events.

They were Van der Vyver (2nd in 100m), Andre Olivier (3rd in 800m), Victor Hogan (4th in discus), Cornel Fredericks (4th in 400m hurdles), PC Beneke (5th in 400m hurdles), Tazmin Brits (5th in javelin) and Stefan Brits (6th in long jump).

Welcoming the athletes in Johannesburg yesterday, Athletics SA's president Leonard Chuene, said: "We are happy with the performance of our athletes. I hope the experience they gained in Poland stands them in good stead in future."