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  • Writer's pictureMosibodi Whitehead

Xaba and Sosibo target fast times at Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K

Glenrose Xaba will be targeting only the second sub-32-minute 10km of her career when she lines up for the Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K this coming Sunday, 7 April 2024.

Xaba was the first South African home, placing 4th overall in a then personal best time of 32:23 in the inaugural Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K in 2023. Despite failing to achieve her target of finishing inside the top 30 at the World Cross Country Championships in Serbia on Sunday 31 March this year, Xaba remains bullish about her prospects of running faster than she ever has before over 10km.

"I’m looking forward to the Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K to run a good time and have a good race. I hope the conditions will be good. I can be happy if I can run a PB since I have 31:55. So I would be happy with anything around 31:40 or 31:50. I’m really looking forward to having a good race because the conditions in Gqeberha are always good and the

vibe and atmosphere is always entertaining," said the diminutive Xaba who improved on that 32:23 with a 31:55 clocking last June.

Xaba flying to a personal best during the inaugural Absa RUN YOUR CITY GQEBERHA 10K in April 2023. Photo Credit: Rae Trewbrowne.

The multiple SA 10 000m champion, who also won the national 10km title on 10 March before taking 32nd position in the senior women’s 10km race in Belgrade, admits that she has had a busy start to the year. But Xaba credits her coaches Caster Semenya and Ledile Semenya for putting a new strength training regime into place that allows her to bounce back quickly from the exertions of hard racing.

“I’ve been doing strength training and I also have a physio who has been helping me with massages as well. I have a good support system called ‘Power to Health’ that helps me to recover the body very quickly so that I can stay injury free. And then I also do more mileage so that I can last longer,” she explained.

While a new 10km lifetime best is on the cards, Xaba will have to keep an eye on her competition as well. Also on the start list is Cacisile Sosibo who beat Xaba when she produced a lifetime best 1:09:31 to finish in tenth position overall and as the first South African in the 21,1km race at the World Athletics Road Running Championships in Latvia last October.

Cacisile Sosibo in action during the Absa RUN YOUR CITY Series in 2023. Photo Credit: Felix Dlanga

With a personal best of 32:58 run in Nelson Mandela Bay in 2022, Sosibo is hopeful that she will run well again in ‘The Friendly City’. "Gqeberha is always good to me whenever I run there. I like the air there. The place always treats me well. I’m not sure what happens but sometimes I just feel a burst of energy and decide to chase the East Africans," says Sosibo.

Given how well they usually perform in the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality, both Xaba and Sosibo will be buoyed by the news that 29:56 10km runner Diana Chepkorir of Kenya has confirmed her participation. The presence of a strong East African in the field has Xaba fired up about the possibility of running a fast time. "They motivate us. They’ll make us run very fast because we are also looking to get the monetary incentives which are available to SA Athletes for running fast times. This will help us get closer to Elana Meyer’s national record."

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