JOHANNESBURG, July 4, 2012 - Double Amputee runner Oscar Pistorious has been included in South Africa’s 4×400-metre relay team for the 2012 Olympic Games in London and will also be allowed to run the men’s 400-metre race.
Pistorius will become the first man ever to compete in both Summer and Paralympic games.
"Today is truly one of the proudest days of my life. To have been selected to represent Team South Africa at the London 2012 Olympic Games in the individual 400m and the 4x400m relay is a real honour and I am so pleased that years of hard work, determination and sacrifice have all come
"I have run two Olympic ‘A’ standard times over the past twelve months and with the time I ran at the African Championships last week I know my speed and fitness are constantly improving so that I will peak in time for the Olympics."
Olympics.South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee, SASCOC Chief Executive Officer Tubby Reddy confirmed in Johannesburg on Wednesday that s the “Bladerunner”, was among the nine track and field athletes added to the final Olympic Games squad.
“We’re confident that SASCOC together with our National Federations have put together the best team possible with the resources at our disposal. The team is an excellent blend of youth and experience with the intention of delivering medal returns in London as well as grooming our future stars for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.”
After failing to chase qualification in his three races at the just concluded African Athletics Championships in Benin, Pistorius had planned to carry his chase to Belgium and Italy, in the coming days.
"Am disappointed that I couldn't come off with a 45 here. I have had problems in this last week, I have quite a big blister on the back of my right leg,” Pistorious said after the 400m final in Porto Novo, where he became the first amputee runner to win silver at the African Championship in (45.52) behind Bostwana's Isaac Makwala(45.25).
Apart from Pistorius, Khotso Mokoena (long jump), Anaso Jobodwana (200m) and Andre Olivier (800m) are also new additions to the squad. Olivier was the final athlete to qualify, at the Africa Senior Championships in Benin at the
There was also space for decathlete Willem Coertzen who set an SA record at the SA championships in Port Elizabeth and Lehann Fourie in the 110m hurdles.
The initial squad of 112 athletes was announced at Olympic House in Johannesburg on June 6, and the latest names come after the completion of the final qualifying deadlines in the various sporting codes.
Joining Team SA in London will be open water swimmers Troyden Prinsloo and Jessica Roux who swam at the qualifying event in Portugal recently as well as Darren Murray (200-metre backstroke) and Trudi Maree (50m freestyle).
SASCOC President Gideon Sam congratulated the additional members of the squad: “Finally, we have a complete squad! As I have said many times before, we are not taking passengers to London. Everyone has met selection criteria and are genuine Olympic Games material, either now or for 2016. I wish them all the best.”
Managing and coaching additions to the squad saw Olympic silver medallist Hezekiel Sepeng named as manager for the athletics squad and he’ll be assisted by three coaches in Terseus Liebenberg, Hennie Kotze and Gerrie Coetzee.
Aquatics Darren Murray, Trudi Maree, Troyden Prinsloo, Jessica Roux Athletics Willem Coertzen, Willem de Beer, Shaun de Jager, Lehann Fourie, Anaso Jobodwana, Ofentse Mogawane, Khotso Mokoena, Andre Olivier, Oscar Pistorius.