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World Transplant Games off to a festive start

EThekwini Mayor, James Nxumalo joined World Transplant Games athletes on a 5km road race.

THE World Transplant Games kicked off in Durban with sunshine and glorious warm weather with the first three events, the 5km road race, petanque and volleyball.

Local Organising Committee chair, Willie Uys was impressed with the sunny city, “The athletes love Durban, the competition is good and most important, the spirits are high. We look forward to a week of excellent sport.”

WTG Federation, president, Olivier Coustere, agreed, “I am very impressed with Durban has rolled out in terms of facilities and organisation – which is well on par, if not better, than past international events.”

Athletes from 50 countries will participate in the week long international games.

Hungarian athlete Gergo Mezei took the first gold medal of the 2013 WTG in the 5km road race which started and finished at Moses Mabhida Stadium.

The pace stepped up on Tuesday, as cyclists from around the globe competed in a 5km Time Trial and four other events unfolded concurrently at venues around the city.

Great Britain dominated the cycling time trials claiming 13 medals in the various age categories. Overall winner for the men’s race was Erlend Gjerde from the Norway and Ottilie Quince from Great Britain took the womens race.

Guest cyclist, eThekiwini Mayor, James Nxumalo also took on the 5km race, “It was a wonderful atmosphere around the event, people are enjoying themselves and the race but at the same time are getting a vital message across about giving people a second chance by signing up as an organ donor.”

Team South Africa clinched five gold medals in the squash tournament.

The Team Golf event at the Mount Edgecombe Country Club course was won by resident golfer, Derrick Pillay and Gauteng’s Johnny Pareira Da Silva.

The individual event will begin this morning. Tennis singles, Badminton doubles, Swimming and Lawn Bowls will be on for the rest of the day around the city, while Althletics at Kings Park Stadium is not to be missed on Friday and Saturday from 7.30am to 5pm.

Visit www.wtg2013.com or like the Facebook page to keep up with the events.

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