Wesley Botton
Chief sports writer
2 minute read
19 Jun 2022
8:41 am

Medal tables do little to reflect depth at major championships

Wesley Botton

While the SA team raked in 36 medals - far more than Kenya's 23 - they had to settle for second place in the final table at the African Athletics Championships.

Athletes must secure gold to make a real difference for their teams in overall medal standings. Picture: Getty Images

It's a system which has sometimes worked in our favour, but the way countries are measured against each other at track and field championships and multi-sport games is flawed, as was once again made clearly evident at the African Athletics Championships in Mauritius last week. The overall results of national teams at track and field championships are calculated in the same way as multi-code events such as the Olympic Games. All that counts is gold medals, and only when nations are tied with gold do they even look at silver and bronze At the 2017 World Championships in London, the...