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Juan wraps up with a win

By Mark Etheridge

Just like his Central Gauteng women’s counterpart Mapaseka Makhanya, Juan van Deventer ended his athletics season in winning style on Saturday.

The occasion was the four-kilometre short course event at the national cross-country championships in Tshwane and Van Deventer ended up winning in 12min 04sec, to beat Gauteng North’s Dean Brummer by four seconds.

“I decided to run the cross-country, just to end the season off with a win,” explained Van Deventer, a 1500-metre track finalist at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

“The race was good and I felt OK. I decided before the race to go with whoever was leading and pull away with a kilometre to go, which is what I did. I had some strong competition from a few guys, which made it tougher than I had expected, but I was happy with the win in the end.”

Good news for the embattled Athletic South Africa was that Van Deventer paid compliments to the day’s activities. “The championship were the best SA cross country I have ever been to, very well supported, a good route and good performances.”

As for the rest of the year in terms of competition. “I will now have a few weeks rest, and then start with the build-up to next years track season. I will run a few road races and am going to try and run a really fast 10 km towards the end of the year.”