Eastern Province athletes dominated the short sprints at the first of six Yellow Pages Series athletics meetings at the Xerox NMMU Stadium in Port Elizabeth on Friday evening.

Cindy Stewart, from PE, proved too strong for her opposition into a strong headwind in both the women’s 100 (12.06) and 200m (24.06) races.

In the short sprint, she beat Thandiwe Vilakazi (12.45) to a distant second with Tasquane Hufkie (12.50) third. In the longer event, Arista Hefer (24.99) was second with Wenda Theron (25.15) in third.

Another local, Leigh Julius, narrowly failed to emulate Stewart’s performance in the men’s sprints.

The former national 100 and 200m champion’s 10.61 in the 100m was just enough to hold off Thuso Mpuang (10.66) with Roscoe Engel in third (10.77).

The order was reversed in the 200m, with Mpuang holding on for the win (21.11). Julius (21.21) was a close second with Isaak van Wyk third (21.32).

Johannesburg’s Tshamano Setone delivered the stand-out performance of the event when he narrowly won the 5 000m for men.

He overtook Potchefstroom’s Elroy Gelant on the line to win in 13:25.51, one of the best and quickest 5 000m races in recent memory. Gelant had to settle for second in 13:25.88, with another Gauteng runner, Stephen Mokoka, taking third in 13:27.22.

In the process, all three runners recorded B qualifying times for the Commonwealth Games in New Delhi later this year.

Eastern Province half-marathon champion, Zolani Ngqaqa, took 37 seconds off his personal best, set the previous weekend, to finish a credible sixth in 13:35.55.

In the mile, the first one in the Eastern Cape in 13 years, the runners paid the price for a slow first lap in their quest for a dream mile. Windy Jonas missed the magical mark by less than three seconds to record 4:02.88, with Pharson Magagane (4:04.65) and Dean Brummer (4:07.50) filling the minor placings.

Robert Oosthuizen of Maties recorded an A qualifying distance for the Commonwealth Games with a throw of 82.96m in the men’s javelin. Hardus Pienaar could only manage 78.84m for second with Ulrich Damon’s 72.80m earning him third.

The University of Johannesburg’s Lebo Phalula started the evening off by setting a personal best time of 15:48.45 in the women’s 5 000m. She easily got the better of her twin sister, Lebogang (16:06.14), with Irvette van Blerk a distant third (16:26.13).

Janice Josephs’ leap of 6.21m in the women’s long jump was the farthest this year. Patience Ntshingila (5.97m) placed second with South African champion Delia Smith (5.68m) third.

Namibia’s Tjipekapora proved too strong for her South African counterparts in the women’s 400m. She won the race in 54.49 with Alet van Wyk (55.62) and Eugenie Wicksell (55.63) more than a second back.

South African champion Deone Joubert was below her best in the women’s pole vault. Her jump of 3.70m was however good enough to secure victory ahead of Japan’s Ikuko-Nishikori Creighton (3.70m) and EP champion Eva Thornton (3.55m).

Edwin Molepe’s 8:44.59 equated to victory in the 3 000m steeplechase ahead of Thuso Phaswana (8:49.82) and Sikhumbuzo Seme (9:08.67).

Ofentse Mogawane had the crowd on their feet in the men’s 400m as he narrowly missed out on the B qualifying time (45.95) for the Commonwealth Games.

He took the lead early on to stride to a comfortable victory in 46.10, the quickest time in the country this year. Shane Victor (47.35) took second and Sidwell Mithi (48.42) third.

African record-holder Elizna Naude’s heave of 60.94m in the women’s discus was substantially short of her personal best (64.87m), but good enough for a B qualifying distance for the Commonwealth Games. Maryke Oberholzer (52.92m) placed second with Simoné Meyer third (47.48).

Keenan Watson from the University of the Western Cape’s leap of 7.54m in the men’s long jump earned him victory in a close battle with Zaarck Visser (7.41). Home boy Jason Karolisin finished third (7.25).

Victor Hogan from the Maties was more than five metres clear of his nearest rival in the men’s discus with his throw of 58.30m. Dean Wattrus was second (52.96m) and Dewald van Heerden third (52.96).

National record-holder Tebogo Mashela, running for the University of Johannesburg, collected a comfortable victory in the women’s 3 000m steeplechase. She stopped the clock on 10:10.14, with Myrette Filmalter (10:31.51) second and Nolene Conrad (10:47.01) third.

Local girl Ntombesintu Ntshiliza placed fourth in 16:37.30.

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