In the sand­pit

The Star Early Edition - - SPORT - OCKERT DE VIL­LIERS

EX­TEND­ING his un­beaten run on the in­ter­na­tional stage, Luvo Many­onga leapt to victory at the Stock­holm IAAF Di­a­mond League meet­ing to tighten his grip in the long-jump event.

His 8.36m win­ning jump may be mod­est for Many­onga’s lofty stan­dards but the South African phe­nom can be ex­cused as he con­tin­ues his reign in the sand­pit.

It was the first time in four meet­ings that Many­onga failed to ex­tend the mea­sur­ing tape past the 8.60m mark.

Show­ing equally good form, com­pa­triot Ruswahl Sa­maai fin­ished sec­ond be­hind Many­onga with a jump of 8.29m.

Other than over­step­ping on his third at­tempt, it was another fault­less se­quence of jumps for Many­onga.

The rest of Many­onga’s jumps all landed above 8.20m as he con­tin­ues his su­perb un­beaten run this year.

The victory may have come at a cost, how­ever, as Many­onga landed awk­wardly on his fi­nal at­tempt, which seemed to have left him in­jured.

For­mer South African long jump record­holder Khotso Mokoena fin­ished in sixth place with a best jump of 7.98m.

Many­onga and Sa­maai re­main in the top two places on the world rank­ings with the for­mer top­ping the lad­der with his mam­moth 8.65m from he South African Cham­pi­onships.

There were a few mishaps for two fel­low South Africans with 110m hur­dles record-holder An­to­nio Alkana false start­ing while one-lap hur­dler LJ van Zyl clipped the fi­nal hur­dle to lose his grasp of a podium place.

Alkana was dis­qual­i­fied, while Van Zyl had to be con­tent with eighth place in a time of 51.42 sec­onds.

Ear­lier, mid­dle dis­tance ace Ry­nardt van Rens­burg posted a sea­son’s best 800m time of one minute, 45.73 sec­onds (1:45.73) for a third-place fin­ish.

In the men’s 400m race Pi­eter Con­radie fin­ished eighth in the one-lap sprint with a pedes­trian time of 47.22. Con­radie won his heat ear­lier in the day with a much faster time of 45.88.

On Satur­day evening a South African 4x100m re­lay quar­tet of Akani Sim­bine, Clarence Mun­yai, Thando Roto, and Hen­ri­cho Bru­in­tjies posted a time of 39.80 sec­onds in cold and windy con­di­tions in Samorin, Slo­vakia.

South Africa needs to dip be­low 38.44 to stand a chance of book­ing a place for the IAAF World Cham­pi­onships in Lon­don in Au­gust.

With less than two months to go to the world cham­pi­onships, six South African ath­letes rank among the top three in their re­spec­tive dis­ci­plines.

The next Di­a­mond League meet­ing is sched­uled for Paris at the be­gin­ning of next month.

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