Mosalagae Defends Title

| January 27, 2015

Kaelo Mosalagae successfully defended his national cross country championship title in Gaborone on January 24.

The Lefika athletics club runner proved the value of experience as he stamped authority from the word go. It was in the 6km mark when Mosalagae and Sesebo Matlapeng separated themselves from the rest as they galloped the bumpy and bushy course.

The scorching sun seemed to be taking its toll on some runners as they seemed to be losing momentum in the 10km lap, but Mosalagae on the other hand shocked the spectators as he completely detached himself from all of them leaving a 10m gap behind him.

He maintained his pace and looked robust to finish on a high note while his opponents watched his back disappear in the thick bushes. It was all ululations and screams as the bare footed runner emerged from the bushes to deliver a 12km finish clocking 39:00 walking home P1500 richer.

Matlapeng who has landed Mosalagae tough competition this season was still gasping for air 60m away when the latter crossed the line and only wrapped up at 39:14 pocketing P900 followed by SSKB’s Shephered Kenatshele at 40:20, which earned him P600.

In a post-race interview, Mosalagae attributed his victory to experience stating that he had warned his competitors to pull up their socks in order to match his pace.

He said having competed at the continental and world championships had come in handy for him as he was building on that experience to maintain his form. Nevertheless he stated that he was impressed with his club mate Matlapeng whom he said had a bright future in long distance if he could maintain his hunger to win.

He noted that there was potential in the youngster and he continued to support him by sharing a training programme with him. “I am impressed with the young boy because he looks up to me and don’t consider him as competition but a brother and I want him to take the baton after me.”

Mosalagae stated that BAA made the right decision to hold the race in the afternoon which helps them to adapt to afternoon conditions as they compete in the afternoons at regional and continental meets. However, he urged BAA to host more competitions and give them the same priority as track and field athletes.

In the 8km senior women category, Sports view’s Onneile Dintwe was on another level separating herself from other ladies from the start to finish to clock 31:16. Gaborone Runners club Joyce Tau came second at 32:28 while SSKB’s Gaone Bathoeng came third at 43:12.

The trio won themselves P1000, P500 and P400 respectively. The 8km junior men was won by SSKB’s Sylvester Koko at 2717 pocketing P1000, his team mate Bakang Matlho in second position at 27:27 scooping P500 while Bobonong’s Otshegeditse Rramanki came third in 27:54 winning P300.

The Mmadinare duo of Botho Maripe and Kenewang white scooped first and second spot in the 6km junior women finishing at 23:40 and 25:45 as they pocketed P800 and P400 respectively.

In third spot was Bobonong’s Musa Badubi who clocked 26:31 pocketing P300.

The 6km youth boys’ title went to Jwaneng athletics club’s (JAC) Thabo Maretetse 13:55, Bobonong’s Mpho Diphoro in second at 14:17 and Sportsview’s Katlego sebekedi in third with 14:23. 4km youth girls was won by Bobonong’s Saone Moilwa at 17:09, JAC’s duo of Kedumetse Ramokate and Boitshoko Keitlhokile in second and third respectively clocking 17:29 and 17:43 respectively. The race was sponsored by Pitbull energy drink to a tune of P20 000.

BAA president, Moses Bantsi thanked the athletes for competing in the championships which are a doorstep to the Southern Africa cross country championships scheduled for March in Malawi.

He urged the coaches to continue training the athletes as they prepare for the regional and continental meets so that BAA maintains its position as the number one sport code in Botswana.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Sports

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