Koneshe extends fine form


Leemisa Thuseho

SPRINT starlet Mojela Koneshe last weekend continued his fine form clocking 10:26 in 100 meters to finish third in the Athletics Gauteng North (AGN) League Meeting.

His compatriot Phomolo Lekhooana won the 200m race with a 20:11 time at the same event. However, overall standings left him in 10th position in that category.

Koneshe has been improving gradually with each race. In his first race this season, he clocked 10:88 at the Athletics Central North West (ACNW) Open track and field meeting in Potchefstroom, in March.

A month later, he competed in another race in Potchefstroom and clocked 10:49.

Last month he clocked 10:30 at the University Sport South Africa (USSA) Championships 100m finals. Before the finals he had clocked 10:58 in the heats and 10:43 in the semifinals.

The outstanding performance earned him a ticket to the 2021 Under-20 World Athletics Championships to be held in Nairobi, Kenya in August.

Koneshe is one of the local athletes who had qualified for the now cancelled African Championships that were to be held in Lagos, Nigeria last month. The event was cancelled due to Covid-19.

The athlete told the Lesotho Times this week that he was happy with his recent performance even though he would be happier would be happier qualifying for the Olympics.

“I have been doing well because beating my personal best times in every race and I am particularly impressed by my last race being just 20 years old,” Koneshe said.

“I am happy with my progress because the times I am recording now, I was only expecting to clock them in five years.”

The athlete is still bidding for a ticket to the Tokyo Olympics and is confident he will qualify although the qualification window is fast closing. The window closes on 30 June.

This weekend he will compete in the ACNW track and field league meeting in Potchefstroom, his last chance to qualify.

“I think I am close to qualifying for the Olympics. I could have done better last weekend but I was a bit nervous; maybe because I was competing against some Olympians and top runners.

“I must clock 10:05 to qualify for Olympics and on Saturday I am going to do just that. I am going to give it my best shot because that will be my last chance. I must just do things right and make the required time.

“However, I am not putting myself under any pressure because I am still young and what I am working on is just to keep on improving,” Koneshe said.

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