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‘Boela’ dreams of Olympic stardom

A young man from Greenhills, Paarl East has big dreams, which is to bring gold back to Paarl.

The name Bolokang Moson Mosola is perhaps a name worth remembering. The 20-year-old silver medallist, in both 100 m and 200 m, and current South African long-jump champ in the T37 category for disabled athletes, may well make his mark many times in the years to come.

Known to most of his fellow athletes as “Boela”, he is paralysed on the left side of his body.

He relates the story of the sad day his life changed forever, even though he has no first-hand memory of the tragedy, when a family member shot him in the head when he was a 1-year-old toddler, leaving him with severe disabilities. But this has never got him down.

“Yes, it is sad what happened to me, but I don’t carry any hatred in my heart,” Mosola said. “God has a plan for everyone, and I am focusing on the plan he has for me.”

The brave young man lives with his father, and has to walk to practice every day. “Luckily, everyone knows me and greets me everywhere.”

He began his schooling at Groenheuwel Primary School, but transferred to Ligstraal because of his disability. In 2017 he completed his schooling, and dreamt of taking part in the Olympics.

“I cannot wait to go to the Olympics so I can look after my family.”

According to Mosola’s proud coach, Reagan Julies, who’s well known in athletic circles, the athlete is working very hard to achieve his goal and he knows what he wants in life.

“When I met Boela a few years ago he was training on his own,” he said, “and I knew very early on that this was a potential champ, for only champs are so dedicated.

“He may well have a very sad story to tell, but hopefully by 2022, after the Winter Paralympics in Beijing, everyone will know who Boela is.

“I live to work with athletes who want to work hard, and Boela ticks all the boxes of an athlete who is destined go all the way.

“So watch this space!”

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