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Two from UFS heading for Rio
2016-07-18

Description: Rynhardt_Rio Tags: Rynhardt_Rio

The 800 m athlete from the University of the
Free State, Rynhardt van Rensburg, will soon
take part in his first Olympic Games in
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Photo: Varsity Sports / Wessel Oosthuizen

It is the cherry on top for any sportsman or sportswoman. This is what DB Prinsloo, Director of KovsieSport, has to say about two athletes from the University of the Free State (UFS) being included in the South African team for the Olympic Games.

He says the officials and coaches at KovsieSport are extremely proud of Rynhardt van Rensburg (800 m) and Wayde van Niekerk (400 m). Although they qualified earlier, their names were read out on 14 July 2016 as part of the team of 137 athletes that will participate in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from 5 to 21 August.

In the footsteps of other UFS stars

They follow in the footsteps of former Kovsies like Leslé-Ann George (women’s hockey), Kate Roberts (triathlon), Johan Cronjé (1 500 m), and Frantz Kruger (discus), who represented South Africa at previous Olympics. Apart from these two, four former Kovsies were also included in the team for Rio. They are the Sevens Springbok Philip Snyman, Sevens coach Neil Powell, Chris Dednam as badminton coach and Roberts as team manager of the triathletes. Dednam also competed as a player at the Olympics. Ans Botha, the UFS sprint coach, will also accompany Van Niekerk.

“It is a highlight for any sportsman or sportswoman to be part of the Olympic Games. It is, for example, the same as it is for others to participate in a World Cup,” says Prinsloo.

Description: Wayde2_Rio Tags: Wayde2_Rio

Wayde van Niekerk

Van Niekerk shows mettle on birthday

Prinsloo is very happy for Van Rensburg, since the 24-year-old athlete has been injured for a long time and had to regain his form. On 24 June 2016, he won a bronze medal at the African Championships in Durban in a time of 1:46.15.

Prinsloo feels that Van Niekerk and Caster Semenya (800 m) are great contenders for medals in Rio. Van Niekerk, who celebrated his 24th birthday on 15 July 2016, continued his good preparation for the Olympics by trouncing his rivals on his birthday at a Diamond League event in Monaco in a time of in 44.12.

 

“It is a highlight for any sportsman or
sportswoman to be part of the Olympic Games.”










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