Feature12 Jul 2020

Area in focus: postcards from Africa


South African sprinter Gift Leotlela (© Roger Sedres)

We conclude our Area in Focus series look at Africa with a selection of images which show how athletes from the area have dealt with the coronavirus pandemic.


South Africa's leading athletes

South African distance runner Nolene Conrad reached out to Cape Town area runners via Facebook and Twitter, offering a helping hand to those in need. "Now is the time for us to stand together as a running community and look after each other," she said.

Nolene Conrad (Roger Sedres)

Breyton Poole (Roger Sedres)

Clarence Munyai (Roger Sedres)

Rocco van Rooyen (Roger Sedres)

Wenda Nel (Roger Sedres)

Ruan de Vries (Roger Sedres)

Distance runner Nolene Conrad, high jumper Breyton Poole, sprinter Clarence Munyai, javelin thrower Rocco van Rooyen, 400m hurdler Wenda Nel, and sprint hurdler Ruan de Vries (© Roger Sedres)


World 1500m champion Timothy Cheruiyot

The Kenyan middle-distance runner is one of the few African athletes to have competed while in lockdown. Along with his training partners at the Rongai Athletics Club, including 2017 world 1500m champion Elijah Manangoi, Cheruiyot competed over 2000m in Nairobi as part of Oslo's Impossible Games in June.

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Wednesday workout of a different kind #camp #cleaning #rongai #nairobi #athletics

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400m sprinters Isaac Makwala, Christine Botlogetswe and Baboloki Thebe from Botswana

“In terms of competitions, Africa is going to be hardest hit when you consider that other parts of the world are now resorting to technology races,” said Makwala. “Competitions have commenced in the US and Europe and African athletes are going to be affected the most because the Diamond League is set to commence in August and the borders in Africa may likely remain closed by then."

Isaac Makwala (Calistus Kolantsho)

Christine Botlogetswe (Calistus Kolantsho)

Baboloki Thebe (Calistus Kolantsho)

Isaac Makwala (Calistus Kolantsho)

Christine Botlogetswe (Calistus Kolantsho)

Baboloki Thebe (Calistus Kolantsho)

400m sprinters Isaac Makwala, Christine Botlogetswe and Baboloki Thebe (© Calistus Kolantsho)


Ethiopian 800m runner Habitam Alemu

In any other year, national record-holder Habitam Alemu would have been travelling around the Diamond League circuit. The African bronze medallist is training hard at home with one eye on competing at the Olympics next year.

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# stay safe & life continues

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World indoor 60m champion Murielle Ahoure

Ivorian sprinter Murielle Ahoure spends most of her time in the States, but has fortunately been able to gain access to training facilities at Miami Beach, Florida.

(© Getty Images)


Kenyan distance runner Mary Wacera Ngugi

The two-time world half marathon medallist had been training in the UK when lockdown restrictions were imposed in both Europe and Africa. She is still in the UK but hopes to return to Kenya soon.


NN Running Team

The NN Running Team, who last month organised a worldwide virtual 'marathon relay', have had to adapt their training sessions so that athletes run in much smaller groups than before.

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Another day at the office in Uganda! 👀

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