Three Malawian athletes Doris Fisha, Nalicy Chirwa and Grevazio Mpani put up a superb performance to win medals in the Empondoland Marathon and Half Marathon held in Eastern Cape on Sunday.
According to www.finishtime.co.za, Fisha clocked 2:54:11 hours (hrs) to win gold medal and R10 000 (about K520 000).
This was her first race a month after joining the South African athletics club Orcas Academy in Durban alongside Mpani.
Ndzoyiya Zamekike finished second in 3:05:56 hr while Chili Slindile was third after clocking 3:6:00 hrs.
Chirwa, who joined the club two months ago, won the 21 km race in 1:28:00 hrs and got R4 000 (about K200 000).
Mamanamanye Tsomamatsi came second in 1:30:19 hrs while Elizabath Dihiwayo clocked 1:35:04 hrs to compete podium position.
Mpani also won bronze in the men’s half marathon in 1:10:08 and received R1 000 (about K50 000).
In an interview yesterday, Orcas Academy chairperson Mthokozisi Khuzwayo commended the Malawian athletes for their outstanding performance.
“These athletes are so good. Their performance shows that they are going somewhere and I see a bright future in Fisha. She is a very strong and hardworking athlete.
“Mpani has also shown that he will become the best in 21 km,” he said.
Athletics Association of Malawi (AAM) president Godfrey Phiri said the performance of the athletes in South African races was good for the country.
“The performance is encouraging. We have always said that exposure of our athletes is needed for them to do well at international competitions,” he said.
“Most competitions in South Africa are recognised by International Athletics Associations Federation [IAAF] and they can stand a chance of qualifying for international competitions should they improve.”