UJ athletes rake in 24 gold, silver, bronze medals in 2021 USSA championships
University of Johannesburg (UJ) athletes dominated the first, second and third positions of the University Sport South Africa (USSA) Championships held from 13 to 15 May 2021. UJ was ranked second on the total medal standings of the championships with 24 medals (10 gold, 7 silver and 7 bronze) in various sporting codes, including track and field, high, triple and long jumps as well as discus, hammer, and javelin.
Elvis Mohmomoawa won two gold medals in both the men’s 800m and 1500m distances during the 2021 USSA Championships at the UJ Athletics Stadium
North West University led the competition with 34 medals. These were the first USSA championships, organized at the UJ Athletics Stadium in Westdene, since the start of South Africa’s nationwide COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020.
In the competition, UJ’s athletes dominated some sporting codes. Among the athletes was Nicole van der Merwe, who won two gold medals for the 21km and 10,000m runs. She also scooped a silver medal for the 5000m distance run. Joining van der Merwe on the gold medal standings were Thamsanqa Khonco (men’s 21km distance run), Elvis Mohmomoawa (men’s 800m and 1500m) and Maxime Chaumeton (5000m distances). Other medalists were Tshwanelo Aabobe (gold triple jump, and silver high jump), Divan Mannuel (gold in men’s long jump) and Patience Ntshingila (gold medal in women’s long jumps).
Nkosinathi Sibiya (5000m senior men’s run), Rachel Leistra (5000m women’s run), Meike Strydom and Dane Roets (shotput), and Tshepo Lefete were the other athletes who added to UJ’s medal tally.
UJ’s Jason van Rooyen and Leandri Geel equaled the previous South African records in the men’s senior shotput with a 20.40m and 56.50 in the women’s senior hammer throws, respectively.
UJ’s Athletics Club Manager, Mr Roger Haitengi, said “We’re very happy that UJ held successful championships. It was also a heartwarming experience to have UJ listed in position 2 on the medal standings of the 2021 USSA championships. I am extremely happy for all my athletes who participated in the event, it is even better that we have received medals after the long pause of university sports during the nationwide COVID-19 lockdown.”
Also happy with UJ’s great showing was Ms Nomsa Mahlangu, Senior Director of UJ Sport “Congratulations to all the athletes who participated in the USSA Championships, and a job well done to those who won medals. Thank you to all the institutions that participated, we are immensely proud of the outstanding work of all the coaches and the support of the University Management,” said Mahlangu.
Patience Ntshingila won a gold medal in the women’s long jump during the 2021 USSA Championships at the UJ Athletics Stadium
Jason van Rooyen equaled a South African record of 20.40m throw in shotput during the 2021 USSA Championships at the UJ Athletics Stadium
Rachel Leistra (left) and Nicole van der Merwe dominated the USSA Championships’ 5000m and 10 000m distance runs on Thursday, 13 and Saturday, 15 May 2021