Cape Town - A 38-member national preparation squad has been released by Athletics South Africa (ASA) ahead of the 2018 IAAF World Under-20 Championships in Tampere, Finland.
The squad features seven athletes who earned medals at the IAAF World Under-18 Championships in Nairobi, Kenya this season, including gold medallists Tshenolo Lemao (100m), Retshidisitswe Mlenga (200m), Sokwakhana Zazini (400m Hurdles), Breyton Poole (High Jump) and Zeney van der Walt (400m hurdles).
Taking the next step forward in their respective careers, the country's rising stars will be out to secure their places in the final team for the global junior spectacle, to be held between July 10-15.
To be awarded a place in the Preliminary Team, all athletes must achieve the ASA 'A' standard and will need to prove their fitness in March or April next year.
The preliminary and final teams for the event will be announced closer to the time.
"We are pleased to have such a large group of young athletes sticking up their hands and showing potential to be included in the final team. We wish them well in their preparation," said ASA President, Aleck Skhosana.
"These championships will provide participants with a stepping stone towards greater heights at senior level, as part of a long-term goal to prepare a world beating squad for the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo."
South Africa IAAF World Under-20 squad:
100m - Monareng Mthembu (AGN), Tsebo Matsoso (AFS), Dlodlo Thando (CGA), Mhlenga Retsiditswe (AGN), Tshenolo Lemao (AGN)
200m - Monareng Mthembu (AGN), Tsebo Matsoso (AFS), Dlodlo Thando (CGA), Mhlenga Retsiditswe (AGN), Tshenolo Lemao (AGN)
400m - Zazini Sokwakhana (AGN)
1 500m - Dais Malebane (AGN)
400m hurdles (91cm) - Maree Linford (BOLA), Steenkamp Lourens (LIMA), Zazini Sokwakhana (AGN)
3 000m steeplechase - De Villiers Robbert (ACNW)
High jump - Breyton Poole (WPA)
Pole vault - Van der Watt Ekhardt (BOLA), Van Wyk Valco (BOLA)
Shot put (6kg) - Blignaut Kayle (CGA), De Lacey Jonathan (CGA)
Javelin (800g) - Dames Werner (ANWN), Skinner Brendan (AGN), Schlebusch Johannes (AFS)
400m - Vercuiel Juli (WPA), Viljoen Marlie (AGN), Van Der Walt Zeney (AGN)
800m - Weitz Simonay (CGA), Muller Niene (AGN)
1 500m - Weitz Simonay (CGA), Belling Taylor (AFS)
100 Hurdles (84cm) - Hendricks Welmien (CGA), Erhke Tanya (CGA)
400m hurdles - Vercuiel Juli (WPA), Van Der Walt Zeney (AGN), Joseph Rogail (BOLA)
Shot put (4kg) - Strydom Mieke (SWD)
Discus (1kg) - Van der Walt Tharina (AFS)