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Athletes into Singapore finals

Recently crowned world junior girl’s BMX champion Teagan O’Keefe placed 23rd in the junior mountain bike cross-country final at the inaugural Youth Olympics in Singapore on Tuesday.

Her male counterpart, Luke Roberts took 17th in the junior boys division. There’s no doubting he would have placed a lot higher was it not for mechanical failure that cost him close on two minutes.

The track and field category of the games also got underway with five athletes progressing through to the finals.

In the boys discus, Willem du Plessis threw a personal best 63.17 metres to make the final while Ruan Greyling ran a personal best 47.60sec to go through to the 400m final.

Other athletics finalists were: Kayla Gilbert in the 100m hurdles (14.19sec), Maryke Brits in the long jump (5.88m) and Izelle Neuhoff (55.01 in the 400m).

Flagbearer of Team SA in the opening ceremony, Cape Town’s Wanda Matshaya had a busy day in the fencing competition where she had five fights in the pool section of the epee division.

Of these she lost four, going down to opponents from Romania, Russia, Korea and Argentine before rallying to beat her British opponent.

Wrestler Andries Schutte ended seventh in the 100kg freestyle division.

In the pool our men’s freestyle 4x100m relay team placed second in their heat to progress to the final with a time of 3:26.98sec while Taryn Anne Mackenzie went through to the semi-final of the 100m breaststroke with a time of 1:13.46.

In Tuesday’s late action, South Africa were to come up against the Netherlands in a junior women’s group hockey fixture while swimmer Chad le Clos will be looking to build on his two-medal haul when he swims in the final of the 100m butterfly.