Tokyo — The fact that South African men's sprinting is going through a boom period was emphatically underlined at the Tokyo Stadium on Tuesday night.
Although there weren't any South Africans in the men's 200-meters Olympic final on Wednesday night, there's plenty to look forward to. Starting with next year's Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, for instance.
The 20-year-old Shaun Maswanganyi, who resides in Houston, Texas, has the world at his feet -- quite literally. He had reached the semi-finals of the 100-meters and doubled up by achieving the same in the 200-metres, which is his preferred event.
Having qualified in the morning for the semi-finals in 20.58sec, he shaved 0.40 off that time in stopping the clock in 20.18 in the evening.
That placed him fourth behind Canada's Andre De Grasse and American Kenneth Bednarek. It was the quickest of the three semi-finals and both De Grasse and Bednarek went into the final as favourites to fight out the gold medal.
Although he was placed 10th overall out of 24 speedsters in the semi-finals, Maswanganyi was close to booking his place in the eight-man elite field on the biggest stage of all. Throw in the stat that his personal best is a...