Team Lesotho wins nine medals in SA
TEAM Lesotho won nine medals in last weekend’s South African open Athletics Championship held in Potchefstroom.
According to Lesotho Amateur Athletics Association public relations officer, Sejanamane Maphathe, the country sent a 12-member team to the championship and brought home three gold, two bronze and four silver medals.
However, Maphathe said despite clinching the medals, none of the athletes attained qualifying standards for the 15th World Championships in Athletics to be held from 22–30 August in Beijing, China.
“The competition was very tough as we battled top athletes from the host country, South Africa, as well as Botswana, and Zimbabwe, Zimbabwe,” Maphathe said.
“We took a very young teamm to the championship and some of them were competing outside the country for the firstrst time, which is why I believe they did fairlyly well to come home with those medals.”
Maphathe further said thee association was hoping to take the athletes etes to another competition next monthh in Germiston, South Africa, as wellell as the Botswana National Athletics Championships.
“Unfortunately, we only managedanaged to take 12 athletes to South Africafrica last weekend due to financial constraints.nstraints. Initially, the plan was to go withth 19 run- ners, but we failed due to funding as I have mentioned,” said Maphathe.
“The bigger picture is to prepare the athletes for next year’s Rio de Janeiro olympics since age is on their side because the oldest in the group is 23.
“I believe with more competitions at this level, these athlete will improve and follow in the footsteps household names such as Mosito Lehata and Lerato Sechele.”
Meanwhile, Maphathe said he was impressed by the likes of Limakatso Selala, Tšepang Sello, Thakane Mapho Maphoho, Tšepo Ramashamole, Kabelo Lesia and Mathapelo Molapo i in Potchefstroom.
“These young ath athletes gave a good performance in Potchefstroom and the they will get better with ti time and by taking part in bigger competition competitions,” said Maphathe.
LAAA spokesperson Sejanamane Maphathe