2022 African Athletics Championships: Ferdinand Omanyala edges Akani Simbine to take 100m title; Caster Semenya finishes 5000m in sixth

African record holder Omanyala took the sprint title in a photo finish while Semenya finished over a minute off the pace in the women's 5000m.

By Olympics.com
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Ferdinand Omanyala was crowned king of the men's 100m on day two of the the African Athletics Championships in Mauritius (6 June).

The 26-year-old Kenyan pipped his South African track rival Akani Simbine by three thousandths of a second crossing the line in 9.927, just ahead of Simbine who clocked in at 9.930.

Henricho Bruintjies, also of South Africa, rounded off the podium in third.

Omanyala's victory over Simbine marks a second significant step in the Kenyan's quest for African sprint supremacy.

Back in September last year, Omanyala stripped the continental record from Simbine, when he ran 9.77 smashing the South African's previous benchmark of 9.84 out of the water.

Simbine finished fourth in the Tokyo 2020 final in 2021, while Omanyala was eliminated at the semi-final stage.

Sixth for Semenya in 5000m

There was no podium finish for South Africa's Caster Semenya at the Cote d'Or National Sports Complex after she finished the women's 5000m race in sixth place.

The top prize went to Kenya's Beatrice Chebet who crossed the line in 15:00.82 ahead of Ethiopia's Belayneh Fentaye Azale (15:01.89) and fellow countrywoman Caroline Nyaga (15:05.34).

Heading into the race, the five-time African champion Semenya had set herself the target of improving on her personal best of 15:31.50 and attaining the qualifying mark for the 2022 World Athletics Championships in the distance.

However, it was not to be for Semenya who finished some way off the pace with a time of 16:03.24.

The two-time Olympic gold medallist stepped up her distance from her preferred 800m due to the World Athletics ruling that prevents female athletes with Differences in Sexual Development (DSD) from competing in events from 400m to one mile (1600m) unless they reduce their high testosterone levels.

GO OLYMPIC. GET ALL THIS.

Free live sport events. Unlimited access to series. Unrivalled Olympic news & highlights.