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  • Writer's pictureThathe Msimango

'Working with coach Mdu has elevated me' - Madziva gunning for Comrades after Two Oceans success

After a strong and perhaps surprising performance during which she claimed a much celebrated third position (3:38:00) at the Totalsports Two Oceans Marathon behind Olympians Irvette Van Zyl and Gerda Steyn, Loveness Madziva has now set her sights on the Comrades Marathon. For her wonderful showing in Cape Town on the 13th of April, the  Hollywood Athletics Club rewarded the Zimbabwean with a cheque of R40 000 at the club's Two Oceans celebration event held at their head office in Umhlanga, Durban.

Van Zyl was the big winner grabbing R50 000 in total, while fifth place finisher Carla Molinaro walked away with R20 000 and Khoarahlane Seutloali earned R7000 for his eighth place finish in the men's 56km race. Madziva who spent time out of action after giving birth has been an athlete transformed since joining coach Mdu Khumalo. The 33-year-old says for all her 2024 achievements which also include victory at the Runified City 50km in February, coach Khumalo must take the credit.

Madziva on her way to smashing her Totalsports Two Oceans PB by almost 20 minutes. Photo Credit: Hollywood AC.

"I think working with coach (Mdu Khumalo) has elevated me to another level. To get a podium finish came as a big surprise to me. No one ever thought I would pull off such a strong performance like that," said an elated Madziva.

"I think the preparations leading up to the race indicated that I was in fine form. It was all about getting the basics right. Besides, my coach told me that the women's race is everyone's to win. I know there are incredible women like Irvette and Gerda but my coach told me that on race day, we are all equal. That motivation was all I needed to see the light. In the end, I delivered the best performance in the race after many years trying to do so," she told #TheTopRunner.

The Hollywood Athletic Club rewarded all of their Two Oceans 56km top ten finishers at an awards ceremony in Durban. Photo Credit: Hollywood AC.

Having improved her 56km best from 3:56:18 to 3:38:00 at The World's Most Beautiful Ultra Marathon, all eyes are now on the KZN-based top runner ahead of the Comrades Marathon. After failing to finish The Ultimate Human Race last year, Madziva says her focus is on doing well at in what will be her second attempt at the Comrades Marathon on the 9th of June.

"In training, our focus has been fully based on the Comrades Marathon. I think I can do well after not finishing the race last year. It's a tough race so the approach must be good. The target is to get a podium finish which would be a good achievement." 

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