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All-rounder Weber looks to shine for SA in Bahamas

Having represented Western Province in rugby, karate, wrestling and athletics since the tender age of eight, Jayson Weber always had plans of going from second best to best.

Aged 12, Weber had the guts to proclaim that he’d be the guy to set new South African 100 and 200-metre athletics age group records.

Fast forward four years and Jayson Weber finds himself in Nassau, Bahamas for the 2017 Commonwealth Youth Games, writes Reggie Hufkie.

After putting pressure on his mother to take him to training after his first inter-house athletics competition loss in Grade 3, Weber was determined to be the best.

‘I wasn’t fast and then I decided to start training because I did athletics without training at first… but I wasn’t happy, so in Grade 5 I forced my mother to take me to the track, because my goal back then was to win inter-house and not long after that I won it’ said a shy but confident Weber.

An avid rugby player, the tall and lanky Weber had to fit provincial rugby, athletics, karate as well as regional hockey and school cricket duties into his already busy school-and-homework schedule every day.

Growing up with teacher parents, he quickly learnt that growth is of utmost importance, hence the fast escalation of his athletics career. In spite of winning medals at national championships, Weber (pictured with coach Alroy Dixon) made his mark last year at last combined ASA Sub-youth, Youth and Junior Championships when he won the 100m, 200m and 400m sub-youth (U15) gold medals.

A year later he lined up against guys a year older than him at the ASA U18 & U20 Championships and still managed a podium position in the 200m.

Despite bagging the bronze medal, behind IAAF World U18 gold and silver medallists Tshenolo Lemao and Retshidisitswe Mlenga, Jayson is determined after his inclusion in team delivered by SASCOC to the VI Commonwealth Youth Games taking place between 18-23 July in the Bahamas.

After being put to test over a 350m time trial by Fast Feet head coach Dixon to start off his career, the Parow-based Weber now boasts with fine 10.97sec, 21.33sec and 48.59sec 100m, 200m and 400m personal best times aged only 16.

No wonder he is one of only eight track and field athletes included in the team that will fly the country’s flag high in the Bahamas.

‘I feel privileged to be selected by SASCOC in such a small team, but it was meant to be because I received a lot of support from my parents and my coach without whom I would not have made it,’ mentioned the Brackenfell High School student.

He has his eyes firmly set on a win and if things go accordingly, he will leave a mark alongside Gift Leotlela who won the 2015 Games sprint 200m in Samoa. He is joined in the team by schoolmate Luke Davids who kept him on his toes throughout the season. But by the look of things, Weber has done his home work and he is ready to take on the world.

His feet are planted on the ground, he is remains focused, consistent and confident and with the sowing done, it’s his time to reap.

Take notice athletics world! Jayson Weber is on his way, get to know the name…

Hufkie is a Cape Town based freelance sports writer


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