Youth Olympics Review

Luke Davids celebrating victory at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Photo by Amilcar Orfali/Getty Images


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Western Province Athletics Luke Davids,17, stole the show, at the Youth Olympic Games, in Buenos Aries, Argentina, on Monday. Davids, a Grade 10 pupil at Parow High School clocked 10.15seconds to take the gold medal in the boys’ under-18 100m sprints. However, his time won’t stand due to the wind reading being 3.4metres per second which is over the legal limit of 2.0m per second. But either way he still clinched the gold medal and became the first South African athlete to win the 100m title at the Youth Olympic Games.
The track and field event at the Games was different to other global competitions (heats, semi-finals and finals) where there was stage one and two and the athlete with the fastest time over the two -rounds would be crowed champion. Davids, a member of the University of the Western Cape (UWC) Athletics Club went into stage two as the favourite after clocking 10.56 seconds in stage one. The youngster also helped SA to their best finish on the medal standings at a Youth Olympics joined the likes of Akani Simbine (2018 Commonwealth Games) and Tshenolo Lemao (2017 IAAF U20 World Championships) who became 100m Champion at an international track and field competition in recent years. “Being the 100m Olympic Champion has still not sunk it yet but it is an amazing feeling which I will cherish forever,” said Davids. His mother Celeste said she is proud of what her son has achieved on and off the track. “He has had a long season and overcame a number of obstacles. Credit should go to his coach Nathan van Wyk who has been a coach and so much more to Luke,” she said.

Meanwhile Dane Roets picked up SA’s only other track and field medal of the competition after taking bronze in the shot-put event with a distance of 34.64m over the two stages. In other action Lindukuhle Gora had the second fastest time going into stage two but was disqualified after he stepped on the line at the 200m bend. Although he did not finish on the podium, Gora ran a personal best of 51.70 seconds in stage one. Prudence Sekgodiso who finished second in the 800m event after clocking 2:08.53 seconds in stage one was among the favourites going into stage two. However, she was disqualified after she stepped over the lane in the 100m before cutting in.

Jano Esterhuizen was another favourite going into stage two after he led the javelin competition with a personal best of 77.69m. However, he could only master 65.59m in stage two which saw him finish the competition eighth place overall with a combined distance of 143.38m.


Written by Keagan Mitchell