SA primary schools athletics association formed in 1965

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THE Golden City Post was a newspaper printed in white type on black in the 1960s, a peculiar way of printing an entire page, never mind an entire newspaper.

Of course, today, newspapers are printed in black type on white which is more readable.

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Read all about it.

So, while reading the Golden City Post of 1965 simply to gather more information about athletics period of the 1960s, I came across an article discussing the formation of the South African Primary Schools.

Elsewhere on Athletics Clipboard, on facebook, and on the website, is a story that tells of the formation of the Western Province and SA senior schools in 1954.

Athletics Clipboard, for now, is essentially about senior schools and club athletics.

However, here is an article, written by Athletics Clipboard, on the occasion of the 25th South African Primary Schools Sports Association track and field meeting at the University of the Western Cape in 1990.

The four provinces Western Province, Transvaal, Natal and Northern Cape, at a conference at the Williams Herbert Sportsground, formed the South African Primary Schools Sports Association in 1965.

Natal had hosted the first SAPSSA athletics championships while the headquarters of the association was in Western Province (written as broadly as that).

The officials of the new body were President Mr E Hendricks, Vice-president Mr H Kemp, General secretary Mr T.H. Daniels, andTreasurer Mr R.W. Maurice.

In the newspaper article relating to the 25th celebration of SAPSSSA, the name of Morne Witbooi had cropped up again in senior schools.

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The newspaper article had been written in 1990.

Witbooi, at the time, running for Boland had established three records. He was another sprinter/long jumper of the highest order in the making. See the article and the relevant paragraphs.

On reading more of Witbooi’s athletics achievements, his name crops up again in the boys under 15 age group in 1992.

His name was in the Western Province Senior Schools’ record books – 100m M. Witbooi (Scottsville) 11,2 secs 1992.

Witbooi’s was in good company in the record books. He had broken Terrence Smith of Heathfield High’s 100m record of 11,4 secs set in 1971.

Terrence Smith’s 200m record of 22,4 secs was a bridge too far for Witbooi and for anyone else who followed in 1971.

Smith’s under 15 200m record and his WP senior schools under 17 sprint records (100m in 10,6 secs and the 200m 22,0 secs) stood the test of time, and by 1994, Smith’s name was still in the record books.

Witbooi was the hot property at the time, and many who followed the sport expected the youngster to continue with athletics in what had looked like a bright future for him. Alas, none of his young talents came fruition as a senior, promising as it might have been.

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Morne Witbooi had showed a lot of promise as a junior athlete.

Terrence Hoffman of Mitchell’s Plain (WP) was “big” for his age as under 14 sprinter at the SAPSSA athletics championships in 1990.

His career had been watched with keen interest, but he, too, disappeared off the scene.

The point of mentioning Hoffman is, is that Witbooi had run faster than Hoffman in the 100m in a younger age group. (see article)

Hoffman, however, was quicker in the 150m sprint, “the powerful youth dispelled any doubts about his running prowess” in the 150m. (see article)

For the record, Witbooi of Scottsville High was in good company at Scottsville High.

He would have seen the sprint achievements of Odessa Krause of Scottsville High in 1990 and 1991, an athlete two years older than him. And, he might have heard of the school’s top middle distance athletes and record holders Ebenezer Felix (800m in 1985, 1500m in 1987) and Isaac Opperman (1500m in 1984).

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