VETERAN athlete and coach, Chaplin Mpomane is adamant that the two athletes - ’Neheng Khatala and her husband Khoarahlane Seutloali, who represented Lesotho at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in Japan over the weekend performed to the best of their abilities.
Aug. 8, 2021
2 min read
Khatala, Seutloali did well at Olympics - Coach
'Neheng Khatala and her husband Khoarahlane Seutloali
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Khatala finished 20th out of 88 contestants during the women’s marathon on Saturday while her husband Seutloali appeared on position 67 out of the 106 male marathoners who competed on Sunday.
“The two represented their country well, they were competing against the best athletes in the world and to think they never competed in any international race in preparation for this global multi-sport event,” Mpomane said, congratulating the running couple for finishing their respective races.
Mpomane who is also the couple’s local coach said the two deserve to be honoured for their bravery and resilience, adding that preparation before a race is crucial to any athlete.
“Preparation is the main factor that determines the athlete’s performance during the competition. We have to change our mindset about all this. We should stop the tendency of always blaming the athletes whenever they perform poorly without looking at the contribution made by the sports administrators.
“You cannot prepare for an international event of that magnitude without competing in even a single international race,” Mpomane said.
Adding: “We are still celebrating and sending warmest congratulations to Khatala for doing so well. We are proud of her and want her to keep up the good work.
“I know it was relatively tougher for Khoahlane, but he also did well under the circumstances.”
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“It was a very tough game indeed as Seutloali Khoarahlane managed to complete the race on position 67 in 02:25:03. Congratulations to him and we believe that next time he will perform better,” the Lesotho National Olympic Committee (LNOC) said in a statement.
According to Neo Ramarou, an athletics administrator, Khatala is the first Mosotho woman to finish among the top 20 in an Olympic marathon.
At the 2012 London Olympics, Lesotho marathon queen ’Mamoroallo Tjoka finished 90th out of 107 athletes, clocking in 2:43:15.
Tjoka failed to finish the race at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China after she dropped out because of a leg injury.
This was Khatala and Seutloali’s maiden appearance at the Olympic Games.