Wayde Van Niekerk Photo: Petr David Josek/AP

A 22-member preliminary team has been announced by Athletics South Africa (ASA) for next month’s IAAF World Championships in London.
The squad includes all four of the country’s track and field medallists at last year’s Rio Olympic Games in Brazil, with 400m world record holder Wayde van Niekerk, long lump athlete Luvo Manyonga, 800m runner Caster Semenya and Sunette Viljoen in the javelin spearheading the team.
They will be joined by a number of other medal contenders, including in-form sprinter Akani Simbine, long jumper Ruswahl Samaai and Antonio Alkana in the 110m hurdles.
Athletes who have not been included in the squad will have until the end of the qualifying window of July 23 to achieve the ASA A-standard in their respective disciplines to book themselves a place in the final team.
Before the final entry date, ASA will have to decide which of the four long jumpers – Manyonga, Samaai, Zarck Visser and Khotso Mokoena – who have qualified in the men’s category on the A-Standard of the ASA Qualifying standards, will be entered to represent South Africa.
According to the IAAF Rules for the competition, only three athletes can be entered per country in each event.
Furthermore, ASA will have to wait until 23 July, when the IAAF will announce which relay teams qualified for the 2017 IAAF World Championships.
The only South African team that stand a chance to be selected is the 4x100m Men’s Relay team, which are currently ranked seventh in the world.
Only the top eight teams are invited by the IAAF to participate at the World Championships, along with the top eight finishing teams of the IAAF World Relay Championships.
The 16th edition of the biennial IAAF World Championships will be held in the English capital from August 4-13.
“This is the time for athletes who are still searching for a qualifier to show their mettle,” said Aleck Skhosana, the president of ASA.
“Work harder and don’t give up. There is still a chance for anybody who wants to represent the Rainbow Nation at this global premier event.”
Preliminary SA Team
Women
100m: Carina Horn. 800m: Caster Semenya. 400m Hurdles: Wenda Nel. Javelin: Sunette Viljoen. Marathon: Mapaseka Makhanya, Jenna Challenor.
Men
100m: Akani Simbine, Thando Roto. 200m: Wayde van Niekerk, Akani Simbine, Clarence Munyai, Ncilini Titi. 400m: Wayde van Niekerk. 110m Hurdles: Antonio Alkana. Long jump: Luvo Manyonga, Ruswahl Samaai, Zarck Visser, Khotso Mokoena. Shot put: Orazio Cremona, Jaco Engelbrecht. Javelin: Rocco van Rooyen. Marathon: Lusapho April, Sibusiso Nzima, Desmond Mokgobo.
Athletics South Africa