SA sprinter Anaso Jobodwana’s comeback in full swing
Jobodwana became a father for the first time this week but little did he know that 24 hours after the birth of his son he would beat the 5th fastest man of all time at the Athletix Grand Prix meeting in Pretoria.
JOHANNESBURG - Sprinting sensation Anaso Jobodwana became a father for the first time on 7 March 2018, when his baby boy was born. Little did Jobodwana know that 24 hours later he would beat the 5th fastest man of all time, Justin Gatlin, at the second leg of the Athletix Grand Prix meeting at the Tuks Sports Ground in Pretoria on Thursday night.
It has been a long road that has been blighted by injury for Jobodwana, who admittedly had thoughts of hanging up his running spikes for good.
After winning bronze in the 2015 200m World Championships, Jobodwana’s 2016 was wrecked by injury and he missed the majority of that season. He came back in 2017 but was still far from the Jobodwana that competed against the likes of Usain Bolt at the 2015 World Champs.
The start of 2018 has been a lot better for the man born in King Williams Town in the Eastern Cape and he has shown good form in the inaugural Athletix Grand Prix Series.
Jobodwana impressed in the 200m event at the first meeting at the Ruimsig Stadium in Roodeport, nonchalantly clocking a time of 20.13, practically eyeballing the young Clarence Munyai alongside him as he crossed the line.
And thank you to everyone who came out to support South African athletics. LOOK AT THAT CROWD. It was a privilege to be a part of something of this magnitude on home soil. Hats off to South African fans 🙏🏾🔥🌪️ pic.twitter.com/YgD03d8kPe— Anaso 'HELL YEAH KINFOLK'Jobodwana (@_ambitious_jay) March 9, 2018
A week on from that impressive showing, Jobodwana would face his sternest test of his comeback to date, taking on Gatlin in the 150m in Pretoria. The new father would make light work of his American counterpart, coming first in an unofficial time of 15.10 seconds, with Gatlin coming in fourth place.
Jobodwana says that he dedicated the victory to his new born baby and his wife.
“I was joking to my wife about the baby, saying that this baby wanted to come early to watch me beat Justin Gatlin, but I obviously didn’t know at the time that would happen. Ever since I found out about the baby, I just didn’t want him to have a father that gave up easily, so this is just a dedication to my son and my wife for being there for me”
The 25-year-old Jobodwana believes that South Africa have a talented sprint team for the Commonwealth Games in Australia’s Gold Coast starting in April.
“We have a very good team, and we are all based in Pretoria so if we can just get our heads together we can do well at the Commonwealth Games.”
Jobodwana is set to compete at the SA Champs in a week's time.