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Athletics | SA Track & Field

Cornel Fredericks © Gallo Images

Fredericks through to semis as Van Zyl flops



South Africa's Cornel Fredericks and Victor Hogan progressed through their qualifying round in the morning session of the third day of the IAAF World Athletics Championships in Moscow on Monday.

Fredericks was the sole survivor of South Africa's trio competing in the 400m hurdles heats. He clocked 49.66 seconds to place fourth behind Michael Tinsley who recorded 49.07, the fastest time of the day.

The 23 year-old, who ran the 12th best time in the heats will have to carve about a second from that time if he is to make it past Tuesday's semifinals.

"At the moment, I'm feeling comfortable but it's going to be a tough semifinal," said Fredericks who was fifth in the 2011 world championships in Daegu.

"I'm just going to go out and do my best I will step up!"

Fortunes were not as favourable for Daegu bronze medallist, LJ Van Zyl, who ran a 50.05, finishing fifth in his heat and 25th overall, with only 24 qualifying for the next round.

PC Beneke, who debuted at the championships, finished seventh in his heat, in 51.14, but gained considerably by the step up to the senior level.

In the women's 400m hurdles, Anneri Ebersohn was knocked out of her debut world championships, finishing seventh in her heat in 57.90 seconds. It was well off her best of 55.87 set this year.

Discus thrower "Hulk" Hogan snuck into the finals as the last placed Group B qualifier with a second spin of 62.45 metres.

"I only slept about two hours last night from the stress because this was a big deal for me and I wanted to do good," said Hogan.

"On my first throw, I wasted my minute waiting for the hurdles, the second got my 62.45, but my third was only 61.59."

This was the first major competition for the relative newcomer who, only a month ago, set his personal best of 65.33 metres in Donnas Italy.

Other than Fredericks, whose 400m hurdle semifinal starts at 5.40pm (SA time), the South African focus on Tuesday would lie with Elroy Galant who goes in the first heat of the 5000m at 8.20am.

Despite being South Africa's second fastest runner ever at that distance, he has one of the slowest personal bests in his heat at 13:15.87.

Britain's Mo Farah (PB 12:53.11), who owns the World Champion and Olympic title at 10000m, would be looking for the rare double and goes in the second heat on Tuesday, with the final scheduled for Friday evening.



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