By Riël Hauman
One of South Africa’s top marathon runners, Zolani Ntongana died on Thursday after being struck by a car in Khayelitsha over the previous weekend. He was admitted to hospital in a critical condition and operated on, but then succumbed to his injuries.
Ntongana (born 7 July 1980) ran the fastest marathon of his life in this year’s national championship race in George when he placed third in 2:16:50, a personal best by almost two minutes. He won two races in 2012, the Top Form Challenge 10 km in February and the Swartland Half Marathon in March. Most recently he placed eighth in the Old Mutual Two Oceans Half Marathon (he completed the ultramarathon in 2003 and 2011). Last year he won two races in the Western Cape and placed second in eight.
He represented South Africa in the World Half Marathon and the Southern Region Half Marathon in 2010, finishing 26th and 5th respectively after finishing third in the SA Half Marathon, fifth in the 10000 m at the SA T&F Championships and first in the Western Province Half Marathon.
In earlier years he placed second, third and fourth in the Two Oceans Half Marathon. His other personal bests were 28:46, 45:17 and 62:23.
His body will leave Cape Town on Thursday 10 May, with the funeral taking place in the Eastern Cape on Saturday 12 May.