Mathanga is back and aiming to end his 10km season with a bang at Hollywoodbets Durban 10k
In what is likely to be his last major 10km race of the year, Mbuleli Mathanga is determined to leave a mark on the much anticipated Hollywoodbets Summer 10km scheduled for the 3rd of September. Aside from the fact that the race carries a handsome winners cheque of R35 000 in both men's and women's categories - it has also attracted a star-studded field of South Africa's elite athletes. The start list consists of former SA 5,000 m record holder Elroy Gelant, 27 minute 10km men Thabang Mosiako and Kabelo Seboko Mulaudzi, as well as Collen Malaudzi. Mathanga is expecting fireworks.
"I think the race will be very interesting as so many good country's athletes will be here (Durban) to challenge for the top honours. I don't think we could ask for more as the likes of Seboko, Leeto (Mathews) and Elroy( Gelant) will be running this race," explains the 29-year-old who's 10km lifetime best of 28:03 was set in Durban during the 2022 Absa RUN YOUR CITY series.
"Organisers have assembled a quality field. I think whoever is going to win the race on the day will have to be at his best throughout. This is what we need as runners here in the country - to get tough competition in order to keep on improving. So I expect a very good race," said the Phantane Athletic Club top runner.
Mathanga has been in great form this year winning the the Totalsports Two Oceans Half Marathon title just a fortnight after running 28:08 for seventh place at the Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K. But just as his season was promised faster 10km times, the man who is coached by Mdu Khumalo was struck by injury. With the minor knee injury that he suffered during the World Trail Running Championship in Austria at the beginning of May behind him, Mathanga feels that he has recovered sufficiently enough to target a podium finish at the Kings Park Athletics Stadium on Sunday.
"I think I'm in a shape where I can feel more good performances are coming. I missed the Absa Durban 10k event in July because of the injury but I have fully recovered now. This is my last 10km Road running event for the year as I'm going to turn my focus to Cross Country. So the target remains to get a podium in this race to end on a high note," he said.