Coetzee eager to work harder to put Namibia on the map

Chenoult Lionel Coetzee, the new national record holder in long jump, says he will continue working hard to realise his dream of representing Namibia at a higher level.

The 25-year-old Erongo-based athlete made history at the just-ended Athletics Namibia National Championships when he broke the national long jump record with an impressive jump of 8.27m to be crowned the new national champion.

The previous record was 8.24m and was set by Stephan Louw on 12 January 2008 at the Germiston Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Coetzee in an interview with Nampa on Monday, said: “Credit should be given to the Lord for the courage and strength which He gave me to achieve my goals. There are no words to describe this feeling I’m currently feeling. I am happy to have broken the Namibian long jump record which stood for 15 long years. People can now expect hard work, dedication, as well as me doing my best every time I compete.”

Coetzee’s impressive jump got him into the national team that will represent the country at the 2023 Gaborone International Meet in Botswana later this month.

Belinda Oberholzer, who coaches Coetzee, said it had been a tough journey but seeing him win the long jump event and break the national record is overwhelming.

“Coach Neil Cornelius is a long and triple jump coach in South Africa and we are working together on this athlete. It’s a proud moment as well as a happy one to see that all the hours put into training are paying off,” she said.

Oberholzer added that as a coach their dream is to see their athletes one day achieve their goals.

“These athletes are like our kids. All they have when they start is potential and hard work, but when those goals are met it is a humbling reward,” Oberholzer said.

Source: The Namibian Press Agency