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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

"My goal is to tackle more EP records" - Melikhaya Frans after setting new 5000m EPA mark

After set a new Eastern Province Athletics (EPA) 5000m record, Melikhaya Frans is bullish about the year ahead. On Saturday the man who is better known as a marathon athlete, ran a new personal best of 13:44.09 over twelve and a half laps of the Nelson Mandela Bay University track to eclipse the great Makhosonke Fika's pervious mark of 13:50. The 32-year old is enjoying a purple patch which has seen him run new PB's over 10km, 12km, 15km and 42km during the last ten months.

Melikhaya Frans is in fine form after setting five new personal bests and an EPA record during the last 10 months. On Saturday he broke the EPA 5000m record. Photo Credit: EPA.

"I feel very happy about it," he told #TheTopRunner after the stellar performance. "The record has been on our plans since last year. So since I have not yet started marathon preparation for the World Championships we were working on low mileage and speed with coach to attempt the record," shared the man who is coached by Mike Mbambani.

Armed with faster times over the shorter distances and having qualified to represent South Africa over the marathon distance at the World Champs in the United States in July, the national 30km record holder (1:30:54) is aiming for a good performance. "Coach's method of training guides us for the season, hence we do track and cross country every season. On the 1st March we will begin with Marathon preparations," he explained.

Frans embraces Stephen Mokoka embrace after the 2021 Sanlam Cape Town Marathon. Although Mokoka won the race in 2:10:01, he assisted Frans to achieve qualification for the World Championships. Photo Credit: Sanlam Cape Town Marathon.

If his emotional celebrations upon finishing the Sanlam Cape Town Marathon last October where he achieved his qualification time by just two seconds (2:11:28) are anything to go by, then expect Frans to throw everything into his training for the big day on 17 July in Oregon. "My goal is to tackle more EP records, run well for Team SA at the World Champs and target one Marathon Major race at end of year," he concluded.

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