from FUTHI MBHELE in Durban
DURBAN – FOR two reasons, Durban has a special place in the heart of veteran Irish athlete, Stephen Toal.
When he is not collecting medals at the annual Comrades Marathon, the 59-year-old loves traversing the warm beaches of the diverse South African coastal city.
Toal was back for a second time in “Durbs” to participate in the world-famous ultra-marathon that was held last Sunday.
“The day following the Comrades, I took a walk in the beach and have pictures,” he said.
“I had great time in the (KwaZulu-Natal) province. Durban is the place to be,” Toal added.
He has two medals to show for his efforts thousands of kilometres away from home.
Toal first ran the marathon, known as The Ultimate Human Race, in 2019.
It could have been more races , more medals and more exploits in Durban beaches had the 2020 and 2021 editions not been cancelled because of the global outbreak of the COVID-19.
“I am planning to come back next year,” the athlete-cum-tourist said.
“It’s always great to be here. Look, I’m even struggling to walk,” he said, the toll of running the 89-km race evident.
During the interview he had swapped his running apparel for a sky-blue sports shirt, cargo pants and sneakers.
“I am supposed to be relaxing but I’m walking around because I want to see the beautiful areas,” Toal added.
– CAJ News