South Africa and Kovsies 400 metres sprinter Wayde van Niekerk will conclude his year on the track with the IAAF Continental Cup that is being held in Marrakech in Morocco on 13 and 14 September.
The 22 year old Van Niekerk, the South African record holder in the 400 metres with a time of 44:38, has told DigiSport that he is going to give his best over the weekend in the 400 metres and 4×400 relay, but that he hasn’t set himself any goals with regards to medals or a specific time.
“I haven’t set myself any specific goals for Morocco. I would really love to do well and I am going to give my best. I don’t want to give the race away. It is my last meeting of the season and I would really love a break, but for now I am completely focussed on the coming weekend,” Van Niekerk said.
Van Niekerk is part of an South African contingent that includes Ruan de Vries (110 hurdles), Cornel Fredericks (400 hurdles), Cheyne Rahme (pole vault), Zarck Visser (long jump), Khotso Mokoena (triple jump), Orazio Cremona (shot put), Victor Hogan (discus) and Chris Harmse (hammer throw) in the male category, with Rikenette Steenkamp (100 hurdles), Wenda Nel (400 hurdles), Sunette Viljoen (javelin) and Justine Palframan (4×100 relay) the female participants for South Africa. All of them form part of the greater African team that will try and bring back the title to the continent.
Van Niekerk’s participation in Morocco was doubtful up and until a week ago due to injury, but the young sprinter has been given the green light to participate after some intensive rehabilitation and support at home.
“I almost did not make the team as I had a scare with regards to my hamsting. But I had great help from South Africa’s physiotherapists and now good support at home on the road to recovery. Now I am raring to go and end my year on the track off on a high. My preparations have been very positive. Hopefully that will happen in Morocco,” Van Niekerk said, adding that he is leaving for Marrakech from Bloemfontein on Wednesday.