Glenrose Xaba runs yet another personal best, but still lags behind the Ethiopians

Glenrose Xaba in action

FILE - Glenrose Xaba in action. Photo: Tobias Ginsberg

Published Jun 25, 2023


Durban — She may have lagged behind the Ethiopians once again, but Glenrose Xaba’s star continued to rise and shine brighter as she once again carried the South African flag high in the SPAR Women’s 10km Challenge.

Xaba finished in third place overall once more, just as she did in the Cape Town and Gqeberha legs behind Ethiopia’s duo of Tadu Nare and Salem Gebre. The Boxer Athletics Club starlet did however, run yet another Personal Best time of 31:55, slicing 17 seconds off the time she ran in the Eastern Cape city last month.

The time was just 42 seconds off Elana Meyer’s 22 year-old South African record of 31:13 and the lass from Mpumalanga expressed delight at getting closer to the mark set by the legendary runner she so highly admires.

“My wish is to one day have the record of Elana Meyer and definitely one day I will break it. I want to get it,” Xaba chuckled as she addressed the media in the post race conference at the Hollywood Bets Kings Park Stadium.

Her coach Violet Semenya said she believes her athlete has what she takes to catch up to and even beat the Ethiopians. “The Ethiopians don’t have time anymore, Glenrose will get them, I see that in training, she is getting confident and believes in herself Soon enough the Ethiopian party will be finished.”

The coach was also delighted her athlete ran well: “She’s been after a run of 31 minutes for long, although this is not the 31 we want. But it will come later, now she has to concentrate on the World Half (Marathon Championships) this year. She’s hoping to run a PB (in Latvia in August) and a good position at the World Champs.”

Reflecting on the race in which she was with the lead bunch from the onset, Xaba revealed that she was actually unwell.

“I am very happy about my race, but at the beginning I was not feeling well and my body was not responding the way I wanted it to. But I ran a good time and I produced a massive PB and I am happy that the work we are doing with my coach is bearing fruit.”

Sunday’s race, ran under perfect weather conditions, began at a scintillating pace with the top three as well as Lesotho’s Blandina Makatisi of Maxed Elite breaking away from the rest as early as the first kilometre.

Xaba and Makatisi hung on to the Ethiopians until the fifth kilometre when Nare accelerated as she always does and her compatriot went with her. The duo stuck together for the next two kilometres, with Xaba pushing hard but failing to close the gap. Nare then sped away from Gabre just after the 7km mark and cantered to her second victory in this year’s Series after her win in Gqeberha last month.

Xaba held on the final podium spot and did so in a Personal Best Time to continue what is fast building into a splendid season.


IOL Sport

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