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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

'If they make a mistake I'll win' - Mulaudzi aims for 5 out of 5 as Dijana & Mothibi race for top 10

All eyes will be on Kabelo Mulaudzi during tomorrow's Absa RUN YOUR CITY JOBURG 10K. The question on everyone's lips is whether or not the country's most exciting 10km runner of the moment can make it five wins from five starts because after victories at the Absa RUN YOUR DURBAN 10K, the Absa RUN YOUR CITY TSHWANE 10K, the Hollywoodbets Durban 10k and the ASA Cross Country Championships the Boxer Athletic Club top runner will start as the overwhelming favourite. But where did his athletics journey begin? The 25-year-old says he discovered his love for running when he started running cross country in primary school.

"I started running in the Pick 'n Pay junior races," said the man from Alexandra Township north of Johannesburg. "They used to come to my school to collect us in busses and then take us to cross country races. That's where my current coach Richard Mayer saw me - at a cross country development race. He approached me and has been my coach ever since," he said during an online broadcast ahead of tomorrow's final instalment in the 2023 Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series.

Mulaudzi leading the bunch before going on to win the Absa rUN YOUR CITY TSHWANE 10K on 27 August. Photo credit: Tobias Ginsberg.

With a solid foundation built on years of cross country and track running, it comes as little surprise to athletics scholars that Kabza da Fast is beginning to emerge as the dominant force in 10km running in South Africa. But given the injury struggles he had to contend with last year, it is perhaps surprising how fast it has all happened over the last three months. In the absence of the likes of Precious Mashele, Thabang Mosiako and Elroy Gelant who will be away at the World Half Marathon Championships, most of the other top runners will be watching Muluadzi on Heritage Day.

"I know many of the athletes will be watching me in the bunch. When I move they move, when I relax they relax. The course is nice and the hills are not too bad. The only challenge is the wind, which can be quite strong when we run on the highway. But I'm just going to focus on running my own race and aim for a the top three finish. If they make a mistake, I'll win it," he smiled.

50km World Record holder and Comrades Marathon Record holder Tete Dijana will be looking to cause an upset against the 10km specialists. Photo Credit: Supplied.

Aside from the 10km specialists, also keep an eye on Melikhaya Frans who says he is feeling good after dropping out of the marathon at last month's World Championships in Budapest where the hot conditions got the better of many of the competitors. Also in the field are Comrades Marathon champions Tete Dijana and Edward Mothibi who will be using the race as part of their preparation for an assault on the standard marathon. Although they are better known for their world class ultra marathon performances, Dijana is a 29:57 10km runner at his best, while Mothibi has a solid background running 10 000m and 5000m on the track.

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