South Africa has unveiled a 39-member team to compete at the inaugural Athletics World Cup in London, England next month.
While the nation is expected to battle against the global elite in some disciplines, particularly among the field events, the team features multiple athletes who have shown good form on the international circuit this season.
Among the men, long jump world champion Luvo Manyonga will lead the charge alongside sprinters Akani Simbine, who won the Commonwealth Games 100m title in April, and Clarence Munyai, who produced a spectacular performance at the SA Senior Championships in March when he set a national 200m record of 19.69 seconds in the semifinals.
Other notable athletes include US-based speedster Derrick Mokaleng, who will be eager to carry his impressive collegiate form onto the international circuit in the absence of injured world record holder Wayde van Niekerk, and former SA record holder Simon Magakwe, who has received the nod for the 4x100m relay squad as he continues to make an impact following his return last season from a two-year ban due to an anti-doping rule violation.
Middle-distance ace Caster Semenya will spearhead the SA women’s contingent after being included in the team for the 800m and 1 500m events.
She will be backed by Commonwealth Games medallists Sunette Viljoen in the javelin throw and Wenda Nel in the 400m hurdles, as well as sub-11 sprinter Carina Horn in the 100m dash.
Eight nations will compete at the two-day World Cup meeting, to be held at London Stadium, with South Africa facing teams from the United States, Poland, China, Germany, France, Jamaica, and hosts Great Britain & Northern Ireland.
With $2 million (R26 million) in prize money up for grabs, as well as a trophy for the country which bags the most points, a total of 17 men’s and women’s disciplines will be contested.
While relay races will be included, however, the programme will not feature any distance races beyond 1 500m and there will be no decathlon or heptathlon contests.
SA team for the Athletics World Cup in London (14-15 July, 2018)
100m: Akani Simbine
200m: Clarence Munyai
400m: Derrick Mokaleng
800m: Rynardt van Rensburg
1 500m: Jerry Motsau
110m hurdles: Antonio Alkana
400m hurdles: Lindsay Hanekom
High jump: Chris Moleya
Pole vault: Neil Giliomee
Long jump: Luvo Manyonga
Triple jump: Khotso Mokoena
Shot put: Orazio Cremona
Discus throw: Victor Hogan
Hammer throw: Tshepang Makhethe
Javelin throw: Phil-Mar Janse van Rensburg
4x100m relay: Simbine, Munyai, Roscoe Engel, Simon Magakwe, Henricho Bruintjies
4x400m relay: Mokaleng, Hanekom, Thapelo Phora, Pieter Conradie, Zakhiti Nene
100m: Carina Horn
200m: Justine Palframan
400m: Justine Palframan
800m: Caster Semenya
1 500m: Caster Semenya
100m hurdles: Rikenette Steenkamp
400m hurdles: Wenda Nel
High jump: Julia du Plessis
Pole vault: Christy Nell
Long jump: Lynique Beneke
Triple jump: Patience Ntshingila
Shot put: Ischke Senekal
Discus throw: Ischke Senekal
Hammer throw: Margo Chene Pretorius
Javelin throw: Sunette Viljoen
4x100m relay: Horn, Tebogo Mamatu, Lente Pieterse, Cassidy Williamson, Tamzin Thomas
4x400m relay: Palframan, Semenya, Wenda Nel, Ariane Nel, Rorisang Ramonnye