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Tadu Nare can taste back-to-back SPAR Grand Prix Series titles after victory in Tshwane

Tshwane – Tadu Nare won the Tshwane SPAR Women’s 10km race to essentially seal the title of the six-race 2022 Grand Prix Series.

The Ethiopian, who was champion last year, has now won three of the four races and only an unlikely disastrous showing in the final two races would see her overtaken at the top of the leaderboard.

With her main challenger, 2019 Series champion Helalia Johannes absent from this morning’s race, Nare managed to set some daylight between herself and the Namibian.

All the Ethiopian now needs to do to defend her title is secure podium finishes in the Johannesburg and Cape Town legs of the Series in October.

Johannes, winner of the opening leg in Gqeberha and runner up in both Durban and Mbombela could not make it to this morning’s race having represented her country at the Commonwealth Games where she won bronze in the marathon.

Nare was always the favourite and was in the lead group with her compatriot Salem Gabre and Boxer Athlete’s Glenrose Xaba. The trio were together for most of the race, but the Ethiopian duo pulled away from the South African at about 6km.

With the top two positions literally decided, it was now a battle for third place. For a while Xaba looked to have it sewn up, but she’d expended a lot of energy earlier on in trying to keep up with the Nedbank Running Club’s Ethiopian duo.

And as she struggled up the steep inclines of Irene, local girl Irvette Van Zyl took advantage and overtook her late in the race to become the first South African home.

In the end, it was a clean sweep on the podium for Nedbank Running Club with Nare first in 32:44, Gabre the runner up in 33:08 and Van Zyl in the bronze medal position with a time of 34:14.

Xaba was fourth in 34:52, with Kesa Moletsane in fifth place in 35:25.

Lebo Phalula, Cacisile Sosibo, Kyla Jacobs, Caroline Mhandu and Patience Murowe completed the top ten.

@Tshiliboy

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