Region 5 Games Review
Silusapho Dingiswayo with gold medal at CAA Southern Region Games at Boksburg Stadium.
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From being the number one 110m hurdler in the junior category in South Africa to showing who is the boss in the sprint events, at the African Union Sport Council (AUSC) Region 5 Under-20 Games, in Gaborone, Botswana, last week. Meet Silusapho Dingiswayo,19, who took the gold medal in the boys’ under-20 100m and 200m sprints clocking a personal best of 10.36 and 20.93 seconds at the Region 5 Games.
The Eastern-Cape born athlete was also part of the SA 4x100m relay team that took the silver medal which saw Dingiswayo go home with three medals. This was the first time the young speedster had taken part in sprinting at a major competition, which paid off, and he help SA to top spot on the track and field medal standings, bagging a total of 47 medals. The Rainbow nation also topped the overall medal standings that included: 69 gold,60 silver and 15 bronze medals across the nine sporting codes at the Region 5 Games.
Dingiswayo from Athletics Gauteng North said he is proud of his performances and enjoyed the experience in Botswana. “My hard work at training paid off and hopefully this is the start of good things to come in my sprinting journey., “he said. The youngster who represented SA in the 110m hurdles event at the International of Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) World U20 Championships in Finland, earlier this year said it was a tough decision to change from hurdles to sprints. “After Finland, I had big choices to make in my track and field career which affected me emotionally but was for the better. Next year, I will be competing at senior level and the height of the hurdles would have been a challenge because of my length and that was why I opted for sprinting,” said Dingiswayo who won the gold medal in the boys’ under-20 110m hurdles at the Athletics South Africa (ASA) and Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) Youth and Junior Championships, in April.
“2018 was a great year for me as I achieved a lot more than I could imagen. The plan for 2019 is to stay injury free and to give my best at every competition I take part in,” he said. In other action, the University Sport South Africa (USSA) 100m champion Thembo Monareng took the silver medal in the 100m sprints clocking 10.46 seconds. The World U20 shot put champion Kayle Blignaut throw of 20.90m was enough for first place with countryman Ignatius Marias settling for second with a distance of 18.54m. Sifiso Miya who specializes in long and triple jump did not disappoint after a leap of 7.75m and 15.81m respectively to take gold medal in both events. High jump prodigy Breyton Poole took the gold medal with a height of 2.18m, while his female counter part Yvonne Robson also bagged the gold.
In other female action, Nicola van der Merwe edged out the countryman Rose Xeyi to the take the gold medal in the 100m sprints to stop the clock at 11.88 seconds. A day later, Van der Merwe took the silver medal in the 200m sprints clocking 24.32 seconds behind countryman Antoinette van der Merwe who won the 200m sprints and 100m hurdles events. Mieke Strydom dominated the shot put event to take the gold medal with a distance of 15.16m.
Written by Keagan Mitchell