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Ruben battles in the wet

Ruben Ramolefi, South Africa’s best steeplechaser, finished 10th in the pouring rain in the event┬áin Paris on Friday night, with the highlight of the Golden League meet being Usain Bolt’s 9.79 seconds in the 100 metres.

Ramolefi is part of the OPEX 2012 Road To London squad, but laboured to a 8min 26.54sec finish, which is some 10 seconds off his best time for the year. Conditions, it has to be said, were difficult in the wet, and the race was won by the home favourite Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad, a rare victory in this discipline for a European.

The Kenyan Ezekiel Kemboi was outsprinted down the final straight and had to be content with second spot behind the Frenchman, who must be one of the favourites to break the African stranglehold on the event at the upcoming World Championships in Berlin.

Ramolefi, the only South African competing in the Golden League meet, was never in with a realistic chance of finishing on the podium, and given that he’s on the wrong side of 30, his name as part of the 2012 elite squad for the London Games continues to raise eyebrows.

There was plenty of rain but the lightning came in the form of┬á Bolt, who roared to a meet record 9.79 seconds in winning the men’s 100m. The Olympic champion and world record holder over 100 and 200m was slow out the blocks, as usual, but once into full stride stretched away from the field to win impressively.