Team South Africa has received praised from the government for their exceptional performance at the Commonwealth Games.
South Africa has now collected nine gold medals along with six silver and six bronze medals in their overall tally of 21 medals.
“Government is elated at our star athlete, Caster Semenya’s smashing win in which she broke the world record in the 1500m race and finished at a time of 4:00.71. Semenya also broke legendary athlete Zola Budd’s 34-year-old South African record set in 1984,” Government Communications said in a statement on Wednesday.
Acting GCIS Director-General, Phumla Williams, reached out to congratulate team SA on behalf of the government.
“We are proud of all our participants at the Commonwealth Games. Their success is a result of hard work, determination and perseverance,” Williams said.
“Sports is one of the social fabrics that binds us together as South Africans and may the success of the South African team inspire aspiring young sports athletes.”
The Portfolio Committee on Sport and Recreation also congratulated Semenya for breaking the 1500m record, an event she has just started participating in.
The Chairperson of the committee, Ms Beauty Dlulane said a double is possible and is there for South Africa’s golden girl to take.
“The committee is extremely proud of the achievements on the field in the 2018 edition of the Commonwealth Games in Australia. South Africa’s flag is flying up there with other nations,” Dlulane said.
“The committee is extremely happy as this is an indication of the work SA has been doing over a number of years in athletics. This performance needs to be repeated and sustained,” she said.
There was still a possibility for Team SA to receive more medals. Dlulane said the double was possible as Caster was yet to race in the 800m.
The Committee also said that they were impressed with the victory of Akani Simbine, and Henricho Bruintjies in the 100m, an event that has been mostly dominated by Jamaicans.
“Our athletes have delivered on what they had promised on, and I will be speaking for every South African when I say the nation is excited.”