Stephen Mokoka determined to settle unfinished Olympic business

Stephen Mokoka determined to settle unfinished Olympic business

Renowned South African marathon runner Stephen Mokoka is determined to settle his unfinished business at the upcoming Olympic Games in Paris.

The three-time Cape Town Marathon champion faced disappointment at the previous Games in Tokyo, Japan, where he could not complete the 42.2km race.

However, his impressive Olympic qualifying time of 2:06:42 at the Osaka Marathon last year made him the only local male runner to meet the stringent 2:08:10 standard, showing his desire to overcome the ghosts of his past performance.

Mokoka acknowledges experiencing a challenging period following the Tokyo Olympics due to his failure to finish the marathon, having grappled with mental and emotional turmoil during subsequent local races.

"I think yes, the rough patch means being unable to finish how I wanted to finish, going through the process within the race and the way I was going, because things were not going the way they were supposed to," explained Mokoka.

"In a marathon, if, before 30kms, things just go south, you must think for yourself that if they are going south in this manner, what can I do?

"You press everything you can press, you push, you do everything, but they are not in the right way, it's not nice. Because a marathon is a very long journey from the first kilometre, and then having to stop at 30 kms because you can see there's nothing coming out."

"After that, you're psychological affected and physically drained because you've put a lot into it."

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