Track and Field

From Staff and Wire Reports

South African track and field athletes will compete internationally for the first time in years in the African Unity games, scheduled in October, officials announced.

“This is the start of a speedy return to world athletics and a great moment for South Africa,” said Joe Stutzen, co-chairman of the South African Amateur Athletics Assn., the country’s unified track and field body.

The IAAF, the world body of track and field, granted South Africa provisional membership earlier this year and invited it to this week’s World Championships in Tokyo after banning the country for 15 years because of apartheid.

But South African track and field officials differed over whether to accept the invitation, and eventually rejected it. Last week, the IAAF dropped South Africa’s provisional membership but indicated the country had until Oct. 12 to complete unification of track and field bodies.