No cash prize for Comrades runner

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RUSSIAN athlete Alexandra Morozova will not get her prize money after finishing third in the Comrades,Picture: @ComradesRace

RUSSIAN athlete Alexandra Morozova will not get her prize money after finishing third in the Comrades Marathon on Sunday.

Morozova, who finished second last year, will not be rewarded because her country, Russia, is still suspended by the International Athletics Association Federation (IAAF).

As a result, Morozova will lose the R160 000 prize money. This was confirmed by Athletics South Africa president Aleck Skosana who said that Morozova was welcome to come and compete but would not get paid for it. “The marathon is highly protected under the rules of Athletics South Africa and under the rules of the IAAF,” Skhosana said.

“So the Russian situation is known that their athletics as a country are suspended from IAAF. So IAAF has released the number of athletes to compete and that athlete does not appear on the list. “She can come here, we won’t stop her. It’s within her own right to come to South Africa. “Russia must be reinstated and the athletes name must appear in the Russian list that the IAAF have sent to us. “Now we are not able to talk about the money. If you want to win money, you must be able to comply with regulations. “There are rules of this country and IAAF and the IAAF suspended her country, not us.

“We are a country that follows the rules of the IAAF because we are the country that is affiliated by them. If we don’t follow the rules, we might be suspended as well. “We never had an issue with the Russian twins who came here and won the Comrades seven times because they were members of the IAAF.”

Meanwhile, Skhosana was also pleased to see two South Africans win the Comrades on Sunday after Bongmusa Mthembu and Ann Ashworth won the men’s and women’s race. “Our athletes have worked hard to make sure that they win the title. We are very proud of them and this shows that we are going somewhere as a sporting country.”

  -NEVILLE KHOZA|nevillek@afrotone.co.za

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