TUKS SET FOR FIRST ATHLETICS MEET IN SIX MONTHS
Updated: Nov 5, 2020
The University of Pretoria will host its first athletics meeting in six months on Wednesday. Athletics SA (ASA) suspended the season due to the Covid-19 pandemic in March. ASA re-opened the season on Sunday to grant the athletes the green light to train and compete.The federation opened all the tracks and facilities for athletes all over the country. The High-Performance Centre allows athletes to train at their world-class facilities under strict conditions. No permit, no entry.
Athletics Gauteng North (AGN) will hold its first event in months at the Tuks athletics stadium on Wednesday under strict supervision. Not more than 500 people will be allowed to enter the premises. The sale of food and drinks is prohibited. Athletes and officials are not allowed to take a shower after their respective events.Everyone must bring their own water bottles as well as Covid-19 test results from the last 72 hours.
HPC CEO Toby Sutcliffe said as ridiculous as it may sound, they have no choice but to follow the rules. "I know it may seem crazy, but rules are rules and have to be obeyed. No parents are allowed. No friends and no spectators. We allow coaches, officials, and athletes. No one is allowed to take a shower which means after completing their respective events, athletes must change and go straight home. We need the Covid-19 medical record for you to be allowed into the premises,” explained Sutcliffe.
He said the lecturers who use the facilities to keep themselves fit at the HPC are no longer allowed to do so as they have no permit. Students are also not allowed to train, and runners without permits will be kept far away from the HPC.
“We have angry lecturers and students, but there is nothing that we can do. We are following government regulations. There is chaos, but it is not our rules. There will be a North Gauteng meeting here, but if athletes do not follow the rules, they cannot get in,” said Sutcliffe.
The HPC boss stressed that the university is not responsible for covering the costs of Covid-19. It is every man for himself, and a lot of athletes are frustrated by that.