LEPHALALE — After a great five months of good results in the Provincial and interim Provincial, the athletes from Lephalale embarked on a journey to Port Elizabeth to participate on the National Championships in Nelson Mandela University on 8 September through the help and sponsorship from the Lephalale Local Municipality, Eskom Matimba Power Station and Exxaro Grootegeluk mine. The team, made-up of Tielelo Secondary School and Sedibeng School officials and participants, travelled the 14-hour journey to PE for the National Cross-Country finals.
The Lephalale team did not disappoint, earning three podium positions in the under 19 (Kabelo Motshegoa), under 15 (Comfort Monare) and under 14 (Peter Matlogele) junior men respectively.
Coach Solomon Moruni was thrilled by the fight his athletes showed: “firstly I’m over the moon with joy to see this team participating in the finals, being able to cope and do good on their own for the first time, is an achievement,” he said.
There was the challenge of fatigue due to the long journey to PE, but the athletes pushed through and enjoyed the race.
Comfort Monare showcased a warrior spirit when he forced himself to finish the race with a four-inch thorn stuck in his foot. With tears of pain he limped across the finish line earning himself a podium position.
“I was impressed by the warrior spirit the team showed, through difficult weather, pulled muscles, fatigue and pain, they all managed to finish the race. What excites me the most, is that they learned and experienced real cross country, hills, thorns, mud and difficult weather are all part of the race,” says Moruni.
The team travelled under supervision of Tielelo Secondary School’s teacher, Miss Mathye, who has been with the team from their very first attempt to this prestigious journey at University of Limpopo back in April, along with the chairperson of the SGB, Mr Mfisa.
Both Tielelo and Sedibeng extend their sincere gratitude to Lephalale Municipality for transport sponsorship, Matimba Power Station for the accommodation sponsorship and Exxaro Grootegeluk Coal Mine for their generosity with food sponsorship.
They also thank all individuals who contributed to the journey since the first league in Turfloop until Port Elizabeth.
The team is currently preparing for the field season which opens on Thursday 27 September.
For sponsorship and donations contact: Coach Solomon Moruni at 071 519 9822, Tielelo Secondary School Mr Nyama at 071 278 5849, Sedibeng School Mrs Malepa at 076 281 2313 or Jalek Lekalakala (local sports secretary and reporter) on 079 926 4038.