Nhlakanipho Minenhle Donga Tshabalala recently ended third at the Athletics South Africa Mpumalanga Cross-Country Championships.
Popularly known as Nhlakza to his friends and teachers, this local runner was born on 16 January 2000 in Standerton.
He will represent Mpumalanga at a national competition in Port Elizabeth at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University on 8 September.
The middle child of Sindi and Mini Tshabalala lives in Buffer Zone next to Ext 6 in Sakhile.
Nhlakza began participating in athletics while in Laerskool Kalie de Haas through the guidance of his teacher, Ms Marieka Jansen van Rensburg.
He represented the school on many occasions, winning medals in the process.
“I initially did not like to be a runner, but thought I’d run just to appease Ms Van Rensburg,” he said.
Read the complete article in the next edition of the Standerton Advertiser.