20 December 2017

Botswana: Masalela Rising 800m Star

Gaborone — The Botswana Games have been able to unearth more talent in track events.

North West District athlete, Tshepiso Masalela has proved that he is capable of stepping into Nijel Amos shoes in 800 metres.

How he performed on the track has left an impressive mark hence emerging as one of the spectator's favourites. Although he is only 18 years and inexperienced, Masalela approaches the 800 metres race like someone who has been in the game for a long time.

During the 800 metres final, he did not disappoint spectators who had predicted he would win the race, but what surprised many was how he kicked from the blocks and ultimately crossed the 400 metres mark with a time of 53:00.

Reaching the 200 metres mark, Masalela was hoping to clock a better time which might help him qualify for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, but luck was not on his side as he missed the qualification mark after recording 1:49:55.

On position two was Karabo Teko of the southern region with a time of 1:54:51 while position three went to Thabo Modise of Phikwe clocking 1:55:00.

He said in an interview that he had planned his race well, adding that he had wanted to cross the half mark with 52:00.

"The race was fine, I enjoyed the track, it is only that I was under a lot of pressure to qualify for the Commonwealth Games, but I failed. All is not lost, I will continue to work very hard and I know I will get there," he said.

His coach, Meleko Ndolo said they had prepared well for the games, adding that their mission was to qualify for the Commonwealth Games.

"We had agreed that he should cross the half mark in 53:00, and we had planned that he should accelerate in the second lap," he said.

Meanwhile, Masalela went home with three gold medals after winning 1 500 metres with a time of 3:53:11 while Teko won a silver medal and Thobo Letsholo of Kweneng settled for a bronze medal with 4:05:28.

Masalela together with his teammates made of Bayapo Ndozi, Antony Shangwena, Trust Rababedi bagged a gold medal in the 4 x 400 relay with a time of 3:14:37.

In field events, Olorato Ntshole of the south region grabbed a gold medal in discus with a throw of 30:28 followed by Salvation Kwarefo of Ghanzi with 28:34, while Farasiah Molonda of Central settled for bronze with 26:84.

In javelin category, Nicholas Kegakgametse of Francistown was crowned the champion with a throw of 50:18, silver medal went to Kopangwa Kopangwa of North West with 46:49 while Rafayere Morowero also of North West scooped bronze with 44:82.

Source : BOPA

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