Deserved Success

Tshegofatso Mathopa with a “Pb” of 51.90sec in 400m hurdles

My coach use to tell me that I deserve success; I don’t know, maybe he saw potential in me. But those words kept me going, says the young upcoming hurdler,“TSG the Beast”, born 1995/02/02.

It all started with my grandmother telling me about the importance of exercising, since then I engaged myself into sport. Then one of the good days at Hamilton primary, Mrs Henstock told me to try 400m hurdles. I did and fortunately won it without having proper technique. I started training for this event since.

That’s when I met my former coach Hennie Kotze and started training under him. Mr Kotze taught me many things about running. But one of the things he taught me, that I will never forget was when he told me that “I deserve success”  and I knew from then that my future was bright, we had many plans together about my future. Everything was going according to plan, till coach Kotze got an offer somewhere else and had to leave. Then I joined another coach, Coach Hennie Kriel.

Under coach Kotze I had an opportunity to run for the first time at ASA youth championships in 2012 which were held at Germiston athletic stadium and I got knocked out at the semi-finals, but a year after that I made school team to Penn Relays.

2014 was my best season finally made it to finals. Then end of January this year I joined coach Kriel and we had good preparation for the season. ASA Champs u23 I made it to finals and got bronze medal and 4 x 400m gold medal. Went on to compete at ASA senior champs and made it to finals, got position five.

Currently I’m holding a personal best of 51.90sec in the 400m hurdles, but I believe that I can do better next year. I believe that if the will be B standard qualifying next year I can make the Olympic team.

“Impossible is nothing, I think if you train well and work smart you can achieve the unexpected”

Written by Thapelo Modishane