Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
1 minute read
1 Oct 2020
3:20 pm

Relief for athletes as ASA targets November return

Wesley Botton

With the federation apparently also preparing to release a 2021 fixtures list, ASA says some changes should be expected, including the popular Comrades Marathon moving to September.

Athletics South Africa president Aleck Skhosana. Picture: Gallo Images

While the federation has not yet released a revised fixtures list for the rest of the shortened 2020 season, Athletics South Africa (ASA) says the sport will return to action in November after a seven-month
hiatus.

“We have applied to resume all disciplines on November 1,” ASA president Aleck Skhosana revealed in a Sport Boardroom webinar on Thursday.

Following the suspension of the 2020 campaign in March due to the coronavirus lockdown, non-contact sports were cleared by government to
resume in June, but ASA insisted the sport would not make a comeback until it was certain that it was safe.

Despite the ongoing pandemic, ASA had been widely criticised for its refusal to open the doors for road running and track and field competitions, with local contact sports having already safely resumed, including football and rugby. Elite international athletics had also resumed.

“We have been communicating with the sports ministry over the last couple of days, and we are hoping for athletics to resume in its entirety, but it will depend on approval from government,” Skhosana said.

With the federation apparently also preparing to release a 2021 fixtures list, Skhosana said some changes should be expected, including shifting the popular Comrades Marathon.

The ultra-marathon in KwaZulu-Natal, which was usually held in June, was expected to take place in September as part of a new-look calendar.

“We are just waiting for provinces to submit their fixtures lists before ASA can make an announcement,” Skhosana said, “but we are preparing to publish a full 2021 calendar.”

For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.