The fact that the athletes got to this stage conceals the financial hardship that the team had to endure to make it to the games.
ATHLETICS Griqualand West (AGW) sprint and middle-distance runners Robyn Eland and Maricelle Kruger on Wednesday broke through to the finals of the 100m and 800-metre finals of the four-day 2021 Twizza ASA Track and Field Championships taking place at the Dal Josafat Stadium in Paarl.
This feat conceals the financial hardship that the team had to endure to make it to the games. At the end of March, AGW had given notice to the national controlling body; Athletics South Africa (ASA) that it will not field the province’s relay team for boys aged 16-20 due to logistical reasons.
The memo to ASA was confirmed by AGW president Theo Senekal Snr who was this week holding the fort at the association’s provincial headquarters in Kimberley. In the memo the AGW board explained that “logistics” had forced the decision to withdraw the relay team.
As things stand the AGW team to the Boland championships have had to fund their own consumables, transport and accommodation.
The situation for AGW, especially where it concerns its president, will likely not improve anytime soon. Senekal was last month elected Northern Cape convenor for the Para-Athletics Sports Association at its quadrennial general meeting.
Upon his election Senekal had pledged to make it his priority to encourage and promote the participation of athletes with disabilities in mainstream activities at all levels.
The games will continue until Saturday 10 April (tomorrow)
The rest of the AGW team in Paarl consist of:
Maricelle Kruger – heat 2 of 2 women Under-18 800m
Carmen Louw – heat 1 of 4 Girls Under-16 400m
Jeraldo Scott – heat 2 of 4 Boys Under-16 100m
Robyn Eland – heat 3 of 4 Boys Under-16 100m
Tjaart van der Walt – heat 3 of 3 Men Under-18 400m
Francois Dauth – heat 3 of 5 Men Under-18 100m
Gert Pretorius – heat 2 of 6 Men Under-20 100m