Cape Town - Morne Moolman bagged South Africa’s second medal at the IAAF World Junior Championships in Barcelona when he took bronze in the javelin for men while Justine Palframan broke the 19 year old national record in the 400 metres for junior women.
Apart from these two performances 16 year old Julia du Plessis easily qualified for the final of the women’s high jump and Thapelo Madiba qualified for the semi-finals of the 800 metres for men.
There was also heartbreak for the women’s 4x100m team when they were disqualified in their heat and the men’s 4x100m team, Ischke Senekal and Simone Meyer in the women’s discus, Kayla Gilbert in the 100m hurdles and Adam Lipschitz in the 3000m steeplechase who all failed to progress further than the first round in their respective events.
But the day belonged to Moolman who once again showed his big match temperament to outwit some of his more fancied opponents to come home with the bronze medal.
Moolman was consistent starting with an opening throw of 71.53m and then had a series of 75.63m; 75.12m, the medal winning fifth throw of 76.29m and a last effort of 75.14m. He bettered his previous best distance of 75.08m four times in the competition.
Palframan who got better with each of her races at the Championships took the strong opposition by the horns and stormed home in a time of 51.87sec. This beats the national junior record of 51.89sec set by Myrtle Simpson (Bothma) on 15 April 1983.
Julia du Plessis had a confident qualifying with first time clearances at each of her heights up to 1.82m before failing at 1.84m. Her effort was enough to take her to tomorrow (Sunday) final.
Thapelo Madiba finished second in his heat in 1:50.52 to qualify for today (Saturday) semifinal. If he uses the right race strategy he can qualify for the final.
Senekal (45.33m) and Meyer (45.84m) exited from the discus event while Gilbert (14.23sec) in the 100m hurdles also bowed out.
Lipschitz ran well up to halfway stage in the 3000m steeplechase but then faded gradually to finish in 9:16.17.