Anaso Jobodwana’s love for running took off in his hometown, Phakamisa, outside King William’s Town in the Eastern Cape.
As a youngster he played in the dusty streets with his friends. All their games had an element of running – and he was great at it. High school opened his eyes to the world of athletics and his thoughts of becoming a doctor, physiotherapist or accountant had to take second (third and fourth) place to his new dream.
While he was reaching for the stars, his parents and high school coach kept his feet on the ground and in training. Jobodwana, 23, won the 2010 SA Schools 200m race and gained the confidence to truly believe in himself. He competed in the 200m event at the 2012 London Summer Olympics, where he ran a new personal best of 20.13 seconds.
At the 2015 Beijing World Championships he won bronze in the 200m final, with a national record time of 19.87 seconds.
Today Jobodwana’s goals stretch beyond medals. He wants to help others who have talent but lack the support to nurture it, so that he can pass his personal motto on to them: “aim to be exceptional”.