JOHANNESBURG – South African triathlon kingpins Richard Murray and Henri Schoeman will be looking to finish among the top five in the world at the WTS Grand Finale at the Gold Coast on Sunday.
It should be a sentimental return for Schoeman to the city where he won his Commonwealth Games gold medal earlier this year.
Schoeman will have fond memories of his last race at the Gold Coast, while Murray will be looking to banish the memory from April where he missed out on a medal.
Murray is in a healthier position than his compatriot, lying in third place on the WTS rankings where a favourable result could see him finish among the top three in the world.
The Commonwealth Games should be a distant memory for Murray, who has since emerged as one of the series leaders in 2018.
He won his first World Triathlon Series victory over the Olympic distance in Leeds in June.
Murray started the season by winning the ITU World Cup in Cape Town title for the second year in a row before finishing sixth at the Commonwealth Games.
He followed up his Leeds victory with a third place at WTS Hamburg to further cement his place among the top five in the world.
While Murray is lying in fourth place on the WTS rankings, he will have to settle for one of the remaining places as Spaniard Mario Mola already has his third consecutive overall title pretty much signed, sealed and delivered.
Schoeman made a storming start to the season, winning the opening WTS in Abu Dhabi before winning the Commonwealth Games title.
He has since battled to get on to the podium, but will be buoyed by his sixth-place finish at the World Triathlon Montreal last month.
In the women’s elite race, Gillian Sanders and Anel Radford will be flying the South African flag.@ockertde