Van Dyk king of Boston

SOUTH Africa's Ernst van Dyk outsprinted former countryman Krige Schabort to win his ninth Boston Marathon men's wheelchair title in the US yesterday.

SOUTH Africa's Ernst van Dyk outsprinted former countryman Krige Schabort to win his ninth Boston Marathon men's wheelchair title in the US yesterday.

Van Dyk took the early lead and opened a gap, but by halfway the pack had swallowed him up. He held on, however, and managed to haul the leaders in and kick past Schabort, now competing for the United States, in the finishing straight.

"The pack was going strong and by halfway I could see them coming like a train," Van Dyk said.

"Krige broke away and I tried to remain comfortable, but I was in fourth place for a long time.

"I slowly reeled them back in one by one, and I caught Krige with about a mile to go. I know I can sprint well and I got it," added a delighted Van Dyk.

The 37-year-old Paralympic handcycling gold medallist won the Boston Marathon six times in succession between 2001 and 2006, and after finishing third in 2007 returned to win the race another three years in a row. The world's oldest race over the classic distance was staged for the 114th time this year.

Van Dyk won by four seconds in 1:26.53, with Schabort taking second in 1:26.57 and Kota Hokinoue of Japan placing third in 1:27.05. The South African will now shift his focus towards winning the London Marathon for the first time on Sunday. - Sapa

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