Boy Soke leads the senior men's 12km field at the 2009 Southern Africa Region XC champs in Mauritius (Clyde Koa Wing) © Copyright
General News Gymkhana, Mauritius

African Southern Region XC Champs: A South African affair

The 2009 Southern Region Cross Country Championships took place at Gymkhana on Saturday (28), where South Africa won four gold, four silver and two bronze medals, as Lesotho took two bronze medals in the junior races.

Nothing surprising as South Africa sent a full strength team to Mauritius with the aim to bring back a large haul of medals. Eight countries were present at this competition, namely Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Seychelles, South African and Mauritius

Three in a row for Boy Soke

In the men’s senior race (12 km), Boy Soke from South Africa clinched a third consecutive victory, posting 35:52 after a very tactical race totally under the control of his team mates. Chauncy Master (MAW) and Kaelo Mogsalage (BOT), who were part of the leading pack, failed to thwart the hegemony of the South Africa’s runners.

After easily following the pace of his team mates, Soy Boke finally made the difference during the last two laps of the circuit and went for an straightforward win, as Stephen Mokoka (RSA) finished second (36:04) and Tahamano Setone (RSA) third with 36:22.

“The weather conditions were good, but the track was very tough as we are used to run on hilly ones. Here, it was almost flat everywhere. But, I’m very happy about this third consecutive victory in the past three editions. Now, I’m focused on the World Cross Country Championships in Jordan were I hope to better my 2008 performance where I’ve finished 44. Then, I’ll been looking for a qualification for the World Championships in Berlin as I haven’t reach the entry standards yet,” said Boy Soke.

Lebogang Phalula for a second win in four years

800 meters specialist, Lebogang Phalula (RSA), took gold in the women’s senior race (8 km), clocking 27:50 as her team mates Annerien Van Schalkwyk (27:55) and Tebogo Masehla (28:20) respectively took the silver and the bronze medal.

“It is very hot here. I felt quite uncomfortable with this temperature during the race and I even wanted to drop out. But I said no, I must complete this race as I’m here to represent my country. I also knew that I could win. I’m very happy about this victory,” said Lebogang Phalula who also won the 2006 edition of the Southern Region Cross Country Championships.

“Even if I won today (Saturday), I’m not sure to make the team for the World Cross Country Championships in Jordan. In fact, I prefer to focus on the 800m for Berlin,” she added.

Confusion in the women’s junior race

Makampong Masaile (LES) was going for an easy win in the women’s junior race after leading since the beginning of the event, but she surprisingly stopped 200 meters away from the finishing line. “The officials told me to stop as the race was over,” she said. But the officials declared that she was suffering from abdominal cramps and this is why she stopped.

After a few seconds of confusion, Makampong Masaile went back in the race and finished third, while the victory went to Ashleigh Schnettler (RSA) and the second place Letitia Saayman (RSA).

“It was very hard to run here as it was very hot and I’m not used to those kinds of conditions. But I was keeping in mind that if a can see her (Makampong Masaile), I can catch her. Unfortunately for her, I don’t know what made her stop. Now, I sincerely hope to be part of the team for Jordan,” said Ashleigh Schnettler.

In the men’s junior race (8 km), Sityhilo Diko (RSA) took the gold with 25:05, while his team mate Mfumaneko Fadane finished second (25:09). Lesotho’s Tsepo Ramonene completed the podium with 25:14.

Reynolds Quirin for the IAAF


Complete results

WOMEN

Juniors (6 km)

1. Ashleigh Schnettler RSA 22 :14
2. Letitia Saayman RSA 22 :20
3. Makampong Masaile LES 22 :27
4. Maxine Heine-Wacker RSA 22 :34
5. Memory Chauluka MAW 22 :44
6. Nandipha Dywki RSA 22 :45
7. Anneke Gildenhuys RSA 23 :10
8. Zinhle Sinqe RSA 23 :42
9. Zintle Mtshali RSA 24 :13
10. Josefina Baptista ANG 24 :37
11. Sarah Colas MOZ 25 :46
12. Lidzy Bayaram MRI 26 :02
13. Cecilia Louis MRI 26 :16
14. Danyshel Alexandre MRI 25 :38
15. Rosy Lim Newk Tin MRI 32 :31
16. Cynthia Arouff MRI 36 :51

Seniors (8 km)
1. Lebogang Phalula RSA 27 :50
2. Annenen Van Schalkwyk RSA 27 :55
3. Tebogo Masehla RSA 28 :20
4. Agness Chikwakwa MAW 28 :21
5. Myrette Filmater RSA 28 :24
6. Lebo Phalula RSA 28 :44
7. Takalani Nthulane RSA 28 :44
8. Ernestina Paulino ANG 29 :11
9. Natacha Monique MRI 30 :17
10. Annabelle Lascar MRI 31 :50
11. Antoinette Milazar MRI 32 :35
12. Priscilla Manikion MRI 33 :44
13. Simone Zapha SEY 33 :48
14. Christiane Louis MRI 35 :37

MEN

Juniors (8 km)
1. Sithyilo Diko RSA 25 :05
2. Mfumaneko Fadane RSA 25 :09
3. Tsepo Ramonene LES 25 :14
4. Vuyisile Tshoba RSA 25 :31
5. Windy Jonas RSA 25 :35
6. Joel Monne RSA 25 :42
7. Folavia Sehohle RSA 26 :00
8. Senzo Nkosi RSA 26 :19
9. Samuel Setlelo RSA 26 :37
10. Domingos Muholo ANG 27 :15
11. Nicolas Frichot MRI 27 :20
12. Hansley Babooram MRI 27 :25
13. Kersley Bru MRI 27 :56
14. Nicolas Boisseque MRI 29 :03
15. Fernando Lucas MOZ 29 :30
16. Silver Durhône MRI 30 :02

Seniors (12 km)
1. Boy Soke RSA 35 :52
2. Stephen Mokoka RSA 36 :04
3. Tshamano Setone RSA 36 :22
4. Sibusiso Nzima RSA 36 :26
5. Jeffrey Gwebu RSA 36 :32
6. Chauncy Master MAW 36 :39
7. Kaelo Mosalagae BOT 36 :40
8. Kgosi Tsosane RSA 36 :56
9. Xolisa Tyali RSA 37 :13
10. Thepart Kenatshele BOT 37 :39
11. Lungile Gonqa RSA 37 :51
12. Nonkululeko Zamisa RSA 38 :06
13. Baobine Ramoseka BOT 38 :37
14. Avelino Dumbo ANG 38 :48
15. Unaswi Dambe BOT 38 :54
16. Simon Labiche SEY 38 :58
17. Ndacha Ncherenje MAW 38 :59
18. Jean-Luc Vilbrim MRI 39 :26
19. Pascal Benier MRI 39 :49
20. Christophe Maréna MRI 40 :29
21. Paramasiven Samynaden MRI 40 :40
22. Xavier Verny MRI 42 :11