Tjoka, Nkoka’s M100 000 de­light

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Mikia Kalati

MAMoRoALLo Tjoka is de­lighted to be back at her best after win­ning last Satur­day’s High Al­ti­tude Sum­mer Marathon in Mokhot­long and pock­et­ing M100 000 in the process.

Tjoka (30) clocked 3hrs:07min­utes:37sec­onds to claim do­mes­tic ath­let­ics’ most lu­cra­tive race, while com­pa­triot, Makam­pong Ma­saile Letsie, came sec­ond in 3hrs: 10 min and 56 seconds to take home M60 000. He­len Kimutai from Kenya came third in 3:11:50 and pock­eted M30 000.

Two days after win­ning the 42.2 kilo­me­tre-race, Tjoka told the Le­sotho Times she had to dig deep to re­claim her ti­tle after fin­ish­ing sec­ond be­hind Asefa Che­litu Bo­gela of ethiopia in 2013.

Bo­gela, who had been con­firmed for this year’s race, how­ever, did not turn up to de­fend her ti­tle.

Tjoka, dubbed the Marathon Queen be­cause of her dom­i­nance of lo­cal and South African long-dis­tance races, said her loss last year had been a wake-up call.

“Maybe i ended up be­ing in the com­fort zone last year hence i lost the race which i had won three times in a row,” Tjoka said.

“i was ex­tra-mo­ti­vated this year and in the end, the hard work i put in lead­ing to the race paid off.”

After be­ing trou­bled by in­juries over the last two years re­sult­ing in could con­sider re­tire­ment.

“i was also happy to see Makam­pong fin­ish in sec­ond po­si­tion be­hind me. She is the fu­ture of the coun­try as far as ath­let­ics is con­cerned and it was even spe­cial be­cause she comes from Mokhot­long,” she said.

Tjoka who has now won the High Al­ti­tude race four times fur­ther said she would like to see younger ath­letes tak­ing part in the com­pe­ti­tion next year.

“it’s true the race con­tin­ues to grow, but i will be hap­pier to see more young ath­letes tak­ing part,” Tjoka said.

Lebenya Nkoka, who won the male edi­tion of the race, also said it was through hard work that he came out tops on Satur­day.

“The com­pe­ti­tion was very tough and i had to be at my best to win,” Nkoka said.

Nkoka, who pock­eted M100 000 for clinch­ing first place, fur­ther said he had to come-up with a good strat­egy to win the race after fin­ish­ing sec­ond in 2013.

“Be­ing dis­ci­plined and work­ing hard is very im­por­tant for an ath­lete and i’m glad it worked in the end,” he said, adding he was also happy to see lo­cal ath­letes do­ing well in the race.

Sekeke Lesole and Lehlo­honolo Ralete­bele came sec­ond and third re­spec­tively to walk away M60 000 and M40 000 richer.

‘MaMoroallo Tjoka fin­ishes the race dur­ing the High Al­ti­tude Marathon.

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