Namibia: Masilingi Back On Track

BEATRICE Masilingi showed that she has fully recovered from a recent injury when she gave a polished performance to win the women’s 200m at the fourth leg of Athletics Namibia’s Grand Prix series at Rietfontein over the weekend.

Masilingi, running for the Quinton Steele Botes Athletics Club, comfortably won the race in 22,62 seconds, with Nandi Vass of Unam finishing second, more than two seconds behind in 24,87, while Johanna Ludgerus of Namibia Correctional Services came third in 25,00.

Masilingi’s time was well below her personal best of 22,18 seconds, but her coach Henk Botha said he was fairly satisfied with it.

“Beatrice had a slight injury earlier and we weren’t planning to run at Rietfontein, but I just wanted to check if she had recovered from the injury. I am relatively satisfied, I would have liked it if she ran a bit faster, because our target was a bit closer to 22,40 seconds,” he said.

“I wasn’t at the race myself, but I heard that it was very hot and the athletes had to wait a long time in the sun before they started the race. I don’t want to make excuses, but I also saw a video of the race and it looked like she slacked down a bit towards the end, so maybe I’m being a bit too critical,” he added.

Botha added that Masilingi and her training partner Christine Mboma will now most probably start their international season in South Africa next month.

“Our first international event of the year will now probably take place in Bloemfontein, South Africa on the 16th of March – I’m just waiting for confirmation and once I get that I’ll share the information,” he said.

In the women’s middle distance events, the 17-year-old Saara Shikongo of Kakadhinwa Athletics Club from Eenhana in the Ohangwena region, suffered her first defeat of the season to Angala Tuuliki of Cheetah AC in the women’s 800m.

Tuuliki won in a time of 2:14,92, with Shikongo second in 2:16,28 and Elisia Nambudu of Kakadhinwa third in 2:20:14.

Shikongo, however, got back to winning ways in the women’s 1 500m, when she won a sprint to the line to take gold in 4:45,81, followed by Nambudu (4:46,12) and Salmi Nduviteko of Nampol AC (4:46,36).

Another young Kakadhinwa athlete, Tresia Kakede, meanwhile, maintained her dominance in the long distance events when she won the 5 000m in 18:17,78, with Elizabeth Kalola of Ohangwena AC coming second in 18:18,40 and Indileni Mweshamekange of NCS third in 19:26,02.