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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

"I'm looking to cross the finish line first" - Mashele to face Kenyans in Absa CAPE TOWN 12K CITYRUN

Organisers of the #ABSARUNYOURCITY series have confirmed that Morris Munene Gachanga will be returning to The Mother City to compete in the Absa CAPE TOWN 12K CITYRUN and have another crack at the record he set there four years ago. The Kenyan who set a world best when he ran a sizzling 33:27 at the same race in 2017 will take on South Africa's Precious Mashele on the fast and furious course through the streets of Cape Town.

Mashele on his way to winning the Absa Durban 10k CITYRUN on Sunday. Photo Credit: Anthony Grote.

Not one to shy away from taking on more illustrious opponents, Mashele didn't mince his words when asked about taking on the man who paced the great Eluid Kipchoge to victory at the 2018 London Marathon. "I'm happy with my time," Mashele told journalists after winning the Absa Durban 10km CITYRUN on Sunday. "Now I am looking forward to the Cape Town 12km. So I think there in Cape Town I'm looking to cross the finish line first," were his bold words.

While some may question Mashele's confidence, the clock suggests differently because although the 26-year old East African holds a superior half marathon personal best (59:22 against the South African's 60 flat), the man from Limpopo is the better track athlete. Mashele's best time over 5 000m (13:11) for example (which he set earlier this year on en route to a maiden Olympic qualification) is more than 30 seconds faster than Gachaga. Mashele is also the better performer over the shorter distances on the road where the personal best time he set in Durban (28:11) eclipses the 28:32 held by the Kenyan.

Gachaga on his way to setting a 12km world best at the 2017 Cape Town 12. Photo Credit: Tobias Ginsberg.

"Anything is possible," said the man who has just signed a new deal with sportswear giant Puma. "I always tell people that they should never give up. I grew up in the village and only got the opportunity to run seriously after I had completed my Matric in 2012. Yet today I am a multiple national champion, an Olympian and a sponsored athlete which shows what can be achieved through hard work. I always tell people to never stop believing in their dreams and that pushed me till today. Anything is possible," he told #TheTopRunner.

The Absa Cape Town 12 CITYRUN takes place in on Sunday the 21st of November, with 4 000 runners expected to make their way through the flat and fast streets of the Fairest Cape. You can enter the race by clicking HERE

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