Johannesburg - President Jacob Zuma has congratulated the 2012 winner of the Comrades Marathon - Ludwick Mamabolo.

“We extend hearty congratulations to Mr Mamabolo. This is another feather in South African sport’s prowess and we are happy to share Mr Mamabolo’s victory and glory as South Africans,” said Zuma.

“He has done exceptionally well indeed. We are very proud of his achievement, as it is evidence that hard work pays, and that discipline and dedication are vital in succeeding.”

Mamabolo, from Segopye Village in Turfloop, Limpopo, took the crown on Sunday to became the first South African to win the title in seven years.

He made the race his own with 22km to go from the bottom of Fields Hill and won comfortably over fellow South African Bongmusa Mthembu.

Mamabolo ran the 89km from Pietermaritzburg to Durban in five hours, 31 minutes and three seconds. Mthembu finished in 5:32.42.

Zuma hoped that “one day soon, Mr Mamabolo will accept my invitation to meet him so that I can congratulate him in person and also get some tips on winning the Comrades Marathon”.

He also congratulated all the runners who participated in and finished the race. - Sapa