Brazilian bonus spices up SA 10km Champs

Meshack Khotha

Meshack Khotha

Top female athletes across the country will vie for glory in the Nedbank SA 10km Championships in Stellenbosch on August 30.

The local runners will get stiff competition from their equally good counterparts from Zimbabwe and Namibia.

Last year's winner, Rene Kalmer from Central Gauteng Athletics, will be determined to repeat the performance and defend her title.

Kalmer is part of the SA squad taking part in the Beijing Olympics and is expected back home before month end.

Some of the other runners who are expected to compete for the R25000 first prize are Zintle Xiniwe, Annerien van Schalkwyk and Ntombesintu Ntshiliza.

The championships offer an added incentive to the local runners because anybody who runs under 33min:30sec will automatically gain selection to the provisional national squad bound for Rio de Janeiro.

They will compete at the IAAF World Half-marathon Championships on October 12.

With that bonus up for grabs the race could become wide open, with the KwaZulu-Natal duo of Carey-Ann Cave and Tanith Maxwell entering the fray. Others in contention are Charne Bosman, Gloria Baeba and Catherine Nkosi from Athletics Gauteng North, and Patience Khumalo from Athletics Vaal Triangle.

Sharon Tavenga, last season's runner-up and third-placed Tabitha Tsatsa, both from Zimbabwe, will be out to improve their previous times.