spectacular swansong

Prominent South African sprinter Leigh Julius plans to use the 2009 World Student Games in Serbia to qualify for the International Associations of Athletics Federation World Championships in Berlin, Germany, next month.

Prominent South African sprinter Leigh Julius plans to use the 2009 World Student Games in Serbia to qualify for the International Associations of Athletics Federation World Championships in Berlin, Germany, next month.

"This is the last opportunity to qualify for the World Championships and feel that I will make the grade in the 200m event," said Julius, who is going for his third World Student Games gold medal.

Leigh made his debut in the World Student Games in South Korea in 2003 and won a gold medal in the 200m and silver in the 100m. He successfully defended the 200m in Turkey in 2005 and silver in Thailand in 2007.

The 200m is the popular Port Elizabeth-based Julius' speciality event as he also won the gold medal at the All Africa Games in Algeria in 2007. The athletics competition in Belgrade will start tomorrow with round one eliminations.

"This is my last appearance at the World Student Games as an athlete and the plan is to leave with a bang by winning a gold medal, which was the same way I announced my arrival in 2003," said Julius yesterday.

"I will do my utmost best to win the 200m event in a fast time to qualify for the World Championships. I want to go to Germany both as an individual and a member of the 4x100m relay team."

Julius, a human movement studies student at the Nelson Mandela University of Technology, was a member of the South African 4x100m relay team at the 2008 Beijing Olympics in China.

Thuso Mpuang, who is also here for the World Student Games was a member of that 4x100m team alongside Julius .

Other top athletes also her are Thandi Vilakazi, Boy Soke and Yaw Fosu-Amoah.

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