Namibia: Brilliant Miller Wins Commonwealth Bronze

ALEX Miller gave a superb performance to win Namibia’s second bronze medal in the men’s mountain bike cross country at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham yesterday.

Emulating Helalia Johannes, who won bronze in the women’s marathon on Saturday, Miller gave the ride of his life to win the bronze medal yesterday.

Sam Gaze of New Zealand immediately took the lead, with compatriot Ben Olivier, Cameron Orr of Northern Ireland and Joseph Blackmore of England close behind, while Miller bided his time and finished the first lap in eighth position.

He moved up to sixth position on the second lap and remained there till the half way, mark two laps later.

Miller then made a steady improvement, moving up to fifth and closing the gap on the leaders, and by the start of the final lap he overtook Orr and Blackmore with a powerful surge.

He pulled away to take the bronze medal in a time of 1:36:20, with Gaze taking gold in 1:34:19, and Olivier silver in 1:34:50.

Miller was still in seventh heaven when Hesron Kapanga interviewed him shortly after the finish.

“A bronze medal, it’s so surreal, and I’m still struggling to comprehend that. I never thought about it really, I knew it was possible, but to actually manage it is amazing,” he said.

“I knew it was going to be a long race, and I knew I would get more powerful towards the end, so I just knew I had to keep the tempo high and hopefully catch them in the end,” he added.

It was a great performance that will certainly improve his world ranking and at the age of 21 Miller certainly has an exciting future ahead.

Miller’s compatriots Hugo Hahn and Xavier Papo finished 13th and 17th after being lapped.

Boxers bow out

Namibia’s two boxers, Jonas Junias Joonas and Treagain Ndevelo, however both bowed out of the competition after losing their quarter-final fights yesterday.

In the light welterweight category, Jonas received stiff resistance from Scotland’s Reese Lynch to lose the fight on a unanimous 5-0 points decision.

Lynch managed to close Jonas down with his brawling tactics and although Jonas landed some good shots, he was clearly frustrated by Lynch’s tactics.

Nedevelo’s march in the featherweight category came to an end with a 4-1 points defeat to Hussam Mohammed of India.

Ndevelo gave a fine performance, moving quickly and landing numerous combinations but the Indian who was also more effective on the inside got the judges’ votes.

In athletics, Ivan Danny Geldenhuys advanced to the semifinals of the men’s 400m when he came third in Heat 1 in 46,51 seconds, but compatriot Mahhad Bock narrowly missed out after coming fourth in Heat 2 in 46,71.

On Tuesday evening, Andre Retief also narrowly missed out on a place in the final after coming fourth in his 400m hurdles heat in 51,73 seconds.

Ananias Shikongo had a good start in the Men’s T11/T12 100m as he finished second in his heat to qualify for the final.

Ndodomzi Ntutu of Soth Africa won the heat in 10.89 seconds, with Shikongo second in a season’ best time of 11,12.

On Tuesday evening, Bradley Murere produced a great run to finish fifth in the men’s T45-T47 final.

Murere had a slow start but finished stronger to finish in 11,62 seconds, with Emmanuel Oyinbo-Coker of England taking gold in 10,94, Jaydon Page of Australia silver in 11,10 and Ola Abidogun of England bronze in 11,13.

“My first experience of the Commonwealth Games has been amazing – making it to the final was already a big thing and getting fifth place was even more amazing. This is just the beginning for me,” Murere said after the race.

“I learnt that I need to push a bit harder and I need to work more on my mental side to focus more, to be more relaxed, to control all the pressure and not to be nervous,” he added.


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