Asked by Jacaranda FM DJ Darren Scott whether he would like to participate in both the London Olympics and Paralympics, Pistorius said: “I would like to. I’ve run one qualification time for the Olympics and I need to run another time next year, I think between January and June, but I’ve first got to qualify for the Paralympics. After making history by becoming the first athlete with a disablity to qualify for an able-bodied World Championships, South Africa’s Oscar Pistorius left a huge impression in Daegu, South Korea. Running in the outside lane in his heat, he turned in the second-best time of his career, clocking 45.39 seconds to secure a spot in the semi-finals. “I’m extremely excited about that and I think I’ll be running the 100, 200, 400 and then for the first time the 4 by 100 in the Paralympics, so I’m extremely excited about that. The 400 metre runner had qualified for the event at the last possible opportunity by running a personal best time of 45.07 seconds in Italy in June. 31 August 2011 “I think we’ve got a great year coming up and there’s a lot of hard work [ahead] to prepare for both of those [events] next year.” With the 14th-fastest qualifying time out of 16 for the semi-finals, the “Blade Runner”, as Pistorius is known, was given lane seven in his semi-final. Unfortunately for him, a poor start set him back and he failed to get into his stride, finishing last in the event, but making a massive stride for athletes with disabilities. After the race, Pistorius was somewhat disappointed, but spoke with his customary humility, saying: “I would really like to have performed better tonight. My goal was to make the semi-final when I came out here, and that I did, and it’s just been a great experience. Wenda Theron, running in the women’s 400 metres hurdles, bowed out in the semi-finals, but managed a personal best time of 56.13 seconds in the heats. Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material Ruben Ramolefi, competing in the 3 000 metres steeplechase, turned in the second fastest time in the qualifying rounds of the event. His time of 8:11.50 was also a national record. However, despite his fine performance in achieving the A-qualifying standard, Pistorius was not expected to progress beyond the heats, but, as he has done so often before, he proved his doubters wrong. “I think even if I had run faster tonight, I wouldn’t have made it to the final. It would have taken a miracle for that to happen and I’ve got a lot of respect for the guys that made the final. ‘A great oportunity’“It’s just been a great opportunity to come out here and I’ve learnt a lot from this experience,” he added. “The IAAFs is a phenomenal event and being one of the athletes to be able to come out here has just been a huge blessing.” Already a popular figure among Korean fans, Pistorius was loudly cheered by the locals, who had taken him on as one of their own. Even before the start of the event, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak paid a visit to the athletes’ village and met Pistorius. LJ van Zyl and Cornel Fredericks continued the rich tradition of South African 400 metres hurdlers by qualifying for the final of the event after both claimed second places in their semi-finals. South Korean support Top South African performersWhile South Africans have failed to land any medals in Daegu, there were other promising and excellent performances by Team South Africa athletes during the first three days of competition.
Amid the ongoing controversy over the appointment of six Minister-rank advisers to Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, the Punjab government on Thursday decided to bring in an ordinance to exclude adviser (political and planning) from the ambit of the Punjab State Legislature (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1952.The decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting held at Dera Baba Nanak that was presided over by the Chief Minister.No disqualificationAn official statement said the ordinance will amend the law to add these posts to the list of posts that are not considered office of profit for the purpose of disqualification of MLAs. With the amendment, these MLAs will not be disqualified.The Punjab State Legislature (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1952, had been enacted in terms of Article 191 of the Constitution, to declare certain offices of profit as not disqualifying the holders of such office from being members of the State legislature.“Enacted in 1952, the Act has undergone minor amendments from time to time. However, such amendments have not taken into account the complexity of modern day governance. Further, these amendments to the said Act have not taken into account the reports and studies of various parliamentary committees which addressed the issue of office of profit. Therefore, the Cabinet felt the need to amend Section 2 of the Punjab State Legislature (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1952,” said the statement.The Cabinet also authorised the Punjab Governor to approve and recommend the draft ordinance for promulgation, said the statement.Six advisersThe Punjab government had earlier this month appointed six Minister-rank advisers to the Chief Minister. Five Congress MLAs were given the status of Cabinet Ministers while the sixth was given the rank and status of a Minister of State.
Former India captain Mohammad Azharuddin said he was happy with the way ‘Azhar’, a biopic on his life, has taken shape. The movie opened to mixed reviews on Friday across India. (Read review) Based on Azharuddin’s controversial career, ‘Azhar’ looks at the match-fixing issue that plagued the legendary batsman from Hyderabad and his rags-to-riches story.Bollywood star Emraan Hashmi, who plays the role of Azhar in the movie, drew rave reviews from the former cricketer.”Emraan did a very good job. He is a thorough professional. He has come very, very close to replicate my mannerism. He has imbibed my style by watching my videos,” Azharuddin told India Today. (Also read: Mohammed Azharuddin downplays ex-wife Sangeeta Bijlani’s concerns) “He posed a hundred questions before the shoot. I felt it was easier to score a century than answer his 100 questions. I coached for more than three months – he was under me.”He was willing to understand, he was willing to learn. Anybody else in his place would have found it very tough. I am happy he worked hard for this role,” he said.Azhar said he got good reviews after the movie and lauded the duirector Tony D’Souza for a commendable job.”I am very happy with the way the film has taken shape. The director has really worked hard and the result will show. The actors Emraan, Nargis Fakhri (Sangeeta) and Prachi Desai (Naureen) have put in a lot of work. They got into the roles and have been professional in their approach,” Azhar said.advertisementAzhar was accused of fixing matches soon after South Africa’s tour of India back in 2000 and banned for life by the BCCI. He played 99 Test matches and 334 one-day internationals in a sparkling career that started with three back-to-back hundreds in his first three matches.Azharuddin was one also one of India’s most accomplished captains and is considered to be among the greatest fielders the country has ever produced.