Montsho wins Botswana's first gold

Amantle Montsho ensured herself star status by winning Botswana’s first ever Commonwealth gold medal on Friday when she claimed the 400m gold medal in a new Games record time of 50,10 seconds.

With English Olympic champion Christine Ohuruogo missing the event, along with Jamaica’s world-class trio of Shericka Simpson, Novlene Williams-Mills and Kaliese Spencer, the title was there for the taking.

Montsho stepped up to blitz the field and beat the previous record of 50,17 set in 1998 in Kuala Lumpur by Jamaica’s Alexandre Richards.

Nigeria’s Folashade Abugan (51,39) took the silver and Guyuna’s Tabitha Pompey won the bronze (51,65).

The experienced Montsho, Botswana’s top athlete who carried the flag for her country at the opening ceremony, said it was a dream come true.

“I feel very happy. This is the first ever gold medal for Botswana,” she said.

‘I knew I would win’
“A lot of family and friends will be watching this on TV back home. I’ll be a hero when I get home.
I didn’t feel any pressure because I knew I was going to win tonight.”

Botswana first completed at the Commonwealth Games at Christchurch in 1974 and has attended every one since then.

They had previously won three silvers and four bronze.

Abugan was just glad to get silver.

“It is okay, but mainly I am happy because today Africa wins,” she said.

Pompey, 32, said she was pleased to win a medal at her age.

“Not bad for an old woman,” she said. “Christine Amertil and I are two of the oldest in the field and we have been supporting each other all year.

“We have not had many competitions to help prepare for these championships, so it has been a tough year.” - Sapa.

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