Mubaarik has the juice to go all the way

Promising… Mubaarik Davids in a relaxed mood following a training session at Vygieskraal.

True to the meaning of his name, Mubaarik Davids, 17, a promising athlete and a Grade 11 pupil at Rocklands High School, is blessed with multiple sporting talents and he is good at every one of them.

So much so, his father Natheem, suggested he do it all in one go.

The lanky teen, one of a number of top performers from schools in Mitchell’s Plain trained by Paul Jacobus who runs a training programme at Parkhurst Primary School, returned from last week’s Athletics South Africa’s club decathlon and relay championships, in Sasolburg, with a silver medal. He was the only decathlete from Mitchell’s Plain at the event.

A first of its kind on the SA athletics circuit, the championships brought together the nation’s best of the best in a competition solely dedicated to decathlon and 4 x 100m relays.The two-day event featured South Africa’s most versatile athletes competing in the under-16, under-18, under-20 and senior age groups.

“I consistently won provincial colours for long jump and discus which led my father to encouraging me to pursue the decathlon,” he said.

Of course, natural born speed and athleticism is a good starting point for most athletes, but it really takes something special South Africa’s most versatile athletes to become a good decathlete.

Derived from the ancient Greek word deca, meaning 10, competitors face off in 10 separate events over the course to determine the ultimate winner.

On day one, competitors go through their paces in the 100m dash, long jump, shot put, high jump and a 400m flat, Mubaarik said.

On day two, it’s the 110m hurdles, discus, pole vault, javelin and a 1 500m run. His long legs and comfortable stride makes him a natural on the track, but high jump is his favourite, the youngster said. “It’s my strongest event in which I consistently attain first position,” he said.

In contrast, he finds the pole vault, a more technical discipline, the most challenging.

“It’s an expensive sport. For example, a pole can cost you R15 000, hence replacing a broken pole is a costly affair, he said. “And, it’s not an event WP Athletics is doing a lot to invest in.

It’s quite an expensive sport, considering the cost of transport and coaching fees,” he said.

“Mubaarik is a strong lad and tall in stature which gives him an advantage in the throw events and in high jump,” his father said.

He’s not the only sporty sibling in the family as he’s following in the footsteps of his older brother Ebrahim, 20, who has represented WP multiple times at national level as a sprinter.

For Mubaarik though, it was his first appearance at this level, but he says, definitely not his last.

Besides athletics, Mubaarik is also a talented rugby player and will be going for WP Craven Week trials shortly. He usually plays at flank, his father said, but was told at previous trials that he’s too fast for a flanker and might be tried out in a different position.

Although a pupil at Rocklands High, he plays for Spine Road High as Rocklands does not offer rugby. Whether rugby or athletics, it seems, Mubaarik has the juice to go all the way.

Silver medallist Mubaarik Davids, from Rocklands.
Mubaarik Davids was the only decathlete from Mitchell’s Plain who took part at last week’s Athletics South Africa’s club decathlon and relay championships, in Sasolburg.