Lightning Megan shatters SA hurdles record


Megan Nieman is currently the fastest 90 m hurdles athlete in the o. 16-age group in South Africa, after she recently broke a record of 21 years at the national athletics championship. However, this 15-year-old athlete from Menlopark High School in Pretoria does not easily talk about her achievements.

When asked about that day at the Pilditch Stadium, she smiles from ear to ear. She finished the race in a record time of 12.44 seconds. At least the record remains in the Parkie family, as former Menloparker Mariska Meyer (36) set the record at the time.

Meyer “officially” handed over her title to Megan during a quick visit to the school last week.

Megan is not one for chatting and doesn’t even think about a record she could possibly break.

What makes her record so remarkable is that she was out of action for eight weeks after suffering a thigh muscle injury during the relay during the inter-higher athletics meeting at the end of February.

She was surprised to be in action at the ASA Championships – what more to defend her title in the 90m hurdles!

Megan also participated in the 300 m hurdles with a winning time of 43.59 seconds.

She says a psychological victory is just as important as a physical one.

“I am very focused before my events – if my head is not right I can forget to approach the last three hurdles with the right technique.”

Megan would like to conquer her South African colors in athletics next year.

“I know there is still a lot of work ahead of me to be able to do that, but I am determined to put in the extra practice to pull the green and gold over my shoulders.”

Meyer says it was a great honor and privilege to look the new record holder in the eye.

Meyer, a biokineticist and mother of one, can remember the day in Port Elizabeth where she broke the ASA record like it was yesterday.

Janine Visser van Boland was the record holder in the item at the time, with a time of 12.84 seconds.

“The wind conditions were ideal for setting a record.”

After that, Meyer wrote the SA championship title four times behind her name. However, the injury bug cut her career short.

“Unfortunately, I stopped practicing athletics, but I firmly believe that life works out as it should.”

Who knows, maybe one day she’ll be back on the track, but this time as a veteran athlete.

Meyer says she firmly believes that Megan will achieve many more successes as an athlete.

“Her future is bright! I’m definitely going to keep an eye on her name in the future.”