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SIMUNYE – A familiar ‘ghost’ in Nkoyoyo-based soldier Mzamo Mavuso was back to claim gold in the Swazi Warrior Fitness Challenge.

The final Swazi Warrior of the year staged at Simunye Country Club was one of the most intense and fierce competitions to date. Mavuso, who had won the three other competitions before this past weekend’s event, outshone competitors from the country, South Africa and Mozambique to be the title of ultimate warrior.

The 34-year-old snatched the championship with the fastest time of 07:39:40 minutes ahead of former champion, Charles Mamba. The latter clocked 08:20:50 minutes.
In total, there were 22 obstacles, including a few new obstacles which were kept secret until the final week to ensure the warriors were tested in dexterity, perseverance and strength.

Mavuso said he sacrificed his off-days to prepare for the event and said his routine included cross-fit training and jogging. Three days before the event, he focused on sprints.
Clifton Koen, the main organiser of the event, planned the obstacles with care, making sure that the competitors were always challenged and never took the course for granted.
Catija De Sousa, on the other hand, defender her title in the female division with a time of 11:41:75 minutes.

The Woman Under-40 was won by Carol Preat, with a time of 12:59:84 minutes, closely followed by a new competitor, Kirsten Du Toit, with only 30 seconds between the two.
Another remarkable time was set by Cutter Sibandze, who competes in the Men Over-40 division. His final time of 08:41:44 minutes was almost three minutes faster than his nearest rival. This time placed Cutter fourth overall.
Jean-Claude Da Costa, on other hand, won the junior division with a remarkable time of 10:08:78 minutes, which placed him 10th overall. The other participants, Theo Dlamini and Angelo Vila Palca, did equally well, posting times of less than 13 minutes.

The Ganda Ganda strength competition was the grand finale of this year event. The Ladies had to pull a sled weighing 30kg, whilst flipping a tyre weighing 40kg. The men pulled a sled weighing 100kg and flipping a tyre of 60kg, over a distance of 50 metres. Once again the seniors showed the juniors how it was done. Both first places were won by individuals from the Over-40 divisions. Sihle Dlamini won the men’s challenge, while a new competitor from South Africa, Thabile Khasebe, won the ladies challenge.

“The principal sponsor of the Swazi Warrior is Nedbank, who have made it possible to make this event one of the best fitness challenges in Swaziland. Every competitor received a Nedbank t-shirt at registration, as well water bottles and other novelty gifts,” reads a statement from the organisers.
Every participant also received a participation medal, and beautifully designed t-shirt sponsored by Sportshouse. Prize money of almost E25 000 was divided between the top three positions of the various divisions.

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