Moraa faces Jamaican test in Candice McLeod at the Botswana Golden Grand Prix

ATHLETICS Moraa faces Jamaican test in Candice McLeod at the Botswana Golden Grand Prix

Abigael Wafula 22:55 - 26.04.2023

McLeod is the fastest woman in Saturday's field with a PB of 49.51.

Commonwealth Games 800m champion Mary Moraa will be lining up against a strong field at Saturday’s Botswana Golden Grand Prix at the National Stadium in Gaborone.

The charged field will give Kenya's top two-lap female runner a test to gauge her progress this season as elite track and field sets sail.

Candice McLeod of Jamaica will lead the star-studded field as she lines up as the fastest with a Personal Best (PB) of 49.51. McLeod has been in impeccable form that saw her kickstart her season with two 200m races where she finished in the podium bracket in both.

During last year’s World Championships in Oregon, she could only manage a seventh-place finish in the one-lap race. She will be keen to display great results as she looks forward to redeeming herself at this year’s edition of the global show.

Another woman to watch out for is Belgium’s Cynthia Bolingo. Bolingo comes into the race with a PB of 50.19. The last time Bolingo was in a competitive race was during last year’s Wanda Diamond League Meeting in Brussels where she settled for third place over the 400m.

On her part, Moraa will also be keen to upset the duo as she lines up for the race. The world 800m bronze medallist alias Kisii Express is also a strong woman in her own capacity and might pull off a surprise.

She has a lifetime best time of 50.67 over the distance, and in a recent interview, she revealed she hopes to lower that time at the event. She is keen on using the race as she builds up for the World Championships later in the season.

She also revealed that her body has been responding well to training and things are looking up.

22-year-old Zenéy van der Walt of South Africa is also a force to reckon with when it comes to the 400m race. Walt, the 2018 world under-20 400m Hurdles champion, has a personal best time of 50.81.

She has had a great start to her season that saw her bag wins in the 400m at the ASA Grand Prix and the Athletics Gauteng North Senior and Combined Track and Field Provincial Championships.

Others in the race include Botswana’s duo of Naledi Polang and Thompang Basele, South Africa’s Miranda Coetzee and USA’S Kyra Jefferson.