South African triathlete Mhlengi Gwala was attacked while training near the city of Durban on Tuesday by a trio of jealous lunatics who tried to saw his leg off with a chainsaw.
Gwala’s training partner Sandile Shange told the BBC that the athlete was in stable condition at a hospital and that his injuries were not life-threatening.
“He thought they were coming to rob him, stopped and gave them his phone but they didn’t want his phone, didn’t want his watch or bicycle,” Shange said. “They dragged him to the side of the road to some bushes, took a saw and started cutting his legs.”
“They kept on cutting and when they got to the bone, because the saw was not that sharp, the saw got stuck,” Shange continued. “When they saw it was getting stuck they started on the other leg.”
The attackers ultimately left Gwala for unknown reasons, at which point he was able to drag himself to the road and get help.
South African Olympic triathlon bronze medalist Henri Schoeman called the attack “disgusting” on Twitter and questioned how safe athletes were on South African roads.
A friend of mine, cycling in the Durban area was robbed by three people this morning, Then they attempted to saw off both legs with a chainsaw. Blade too blunt and only got half way through one and started on the other. Absolutely disgusting! How safe are we on SA roads?
— Henri Schoeman (@H_Schoeman) March 6, 2018