It is not uncommon to see talented athletes ruining their life and career because of their scandalous behavior. One such example is Luvo Manyonga, the South African, Track and Field athlete.
Luvo is one of the best long jumpers in the world right now, who has proven his abilities multiple times.
Everyone who knows Luvo praises him for his natural skills and amazing techniques. But his lifestyle and drug use have caused him more harm than good, eventually earning him multiple suspensions.
Born and raised in a poverty-stricken and dysfunctional family, Luvo found his solace in track and field.
Under the mentorship of his coach, he shined in junior championships and eventually in world-level competitions.
But crystal meth quickly brought him in a downward spiral, missing his chance to perform in the 2012 and 2020 Olympics.
Not to forget, he is the silver medalist of the 2016 Rio games, where his competitor Jeff Henderson outjumped him by just 1 centimeter.
In this article, we will discuss the early life and career of Luvo Manyonga. If you want to know more about the rise and fall of this talented athlete, stay till the end!
Luvo Manyonga: Quick Facts
|Full Name||Luvuyo Manyonga|
|Common Name||Luvo Manyonga|
|Birthdate||08 January 1991|
|Age||31 years old|
|Mother’s Name||Joyce Manyonga|
|Father’s Name||John Manyonga|
|Siblings||Two younger siblings|
|Birthplace||Mbekweni, Paarl, South Africa|
|Home Town||Mbekweni, Paarl, South Africa|
|Residence||Bluewater Bay, Port Elizabeth|
|School||Ihlumelo Secondary, Desmond Tutu|
|Weight||82 kg/181 lb|
|Sport||Track and Field|
|Olympics Wins||One silver (2016 Rio Olympic)|
|World Championship||Gold, 2017|
|Achievements||Sportsman of the year South Africa|
|Highest rank||World no. 1|
|Personal Best||8.65 (also south African record)|
|Coach||Mario Smith(former), John McGrath|
|Team||Team Nike, Team South Africa|
|Hobbies||Card games, Music|
|Net Worth||$1 million|
|Social Media||Facebook, Twitter, Instagram|
|Merch||Nike Track and Field|
The Early Life and Family of Luvo Manyonga
Joyce and John Manyonga welcomed Luvo into the world on January 8, 1991. Throughout his childhood, his father, a for-lift truck driver, was largely absent.
John did, however, possess some physical ability; he played rugby with the Impala Platinum rugby teams as a left wing.
Joyce, on the other hand, was a domestic cleaner who raised her family by herself. Luvo was raised in the Mbekweni community in the south-western South African city of Paarl.
His childhood neighborhood is notorious for its drug use and gang-related violence.
The family was struggling to make ends meet, and Joyce had a hard time raising her three children.
He has been tall and slim since he was a little child and began running sprints in school. And He was then persuaded to attempt jumping by one of the coaches, Monelisi Adonis, where he shown innate skill.
He primarily performed the triple jump and long jump up until mid-2009. But due to his ongoing hip ailments, he was forced to give up triple jumping.
He also frequently competed in neighborhood track and field events.
Mario Smith, a local coach, soon saw his talent and took him under his care. Mario gave him a lot of assistance while he pursued a professional career.
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Summary of Luvo Manyonga’s career
His first international achievement came in 2009 at the African Junior Athletics Championships, where Manyonga won bronze.
He jumped an incredible 8.19 meters to win gold in the 2010 World Junior Championships. It is still among the top ten performances by a person under 20.
In 2011, Luvo experimented with tik, a locally produced form of crystal meth, and became immediately dependent on it. Then, utilizing tik for non-performance enhancing purposes, he tested positive for doping at the 2012 National Series Meet.
He was admitted for drug rehab in the months that followed. Despite Coach Smith’s efforts on his behalf, he eventually received an 18-month suspension.
After that, the budding athlete lost his chance to represent his nation at the 2012 London Olympics.
He made a timely return with the goal of attending the 2014 Commonwealth Games. He began working out with Irish strength coach John McGrath as a result.
But he once again missed the Commonwealth Games as a result of improper document handling. Since Luvo was viewed as a PR risk, many people thought that the national athletics authority had done this on purpose.
Coach Smith was killed in a car accident while en route to see Luvo, which brought the awful sequence of events to a sad conclusion.
Luvo encountered some pals taking tik on the way to the memorial who had missed the event.
He was visited by Gideon Sam, the then-president of the national Olympic committee, who became aware of his subpar living circumstances. He then made arrangements for Luvo to train and stay at the high-performance facility of the University of Pretoria.
Luvo then returned to training full-time in 2015.
to Rio 2016 and beyond
In the long jump finals in Rio, Manyonga leapt an individual record of 8.37 meters. Jeff Henderson, though, beat it by one centimeter and brought home the gold for the USA.
In spite of this, Luvo’s Olympic silver medal was a huge accomplishment given how far he has gone since his darkest days.
By capturing gold at the 2017 World Championships in London with a personal best 8.48 meters, he maintained the momentum from the previous year.
Additionally, he captured another gold medal in the 2018 Commonwealth Games by clearing 8.41 meters in the decisive jump.
a second ban
Athletics Integrity Unit tweeted in June 2021 about Luvo Manyonga’s four-year ban.
To continue competing, athletes must adhere strictly to the anti-doping regulations of world athletics. They must also inform the authorities of their whereabouts in order for anti-doping personnel to locate them.
Manga failed the first test in November 2019 and provided vague information regarding the locations of the next two tests in 2020.
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Through Twitter, Luvo quickly expressed his regret to all of his supporters and said that he was still developing. He added that it was a tough period in his life and he was attempting to maintain optimism.
Later, Luvo discussed the prohibition and how his mother’s passing the previous year had led to his fall from grace.
Nobody actually knows what Luvo’s next move will be. We can only hope that he changes his ways and returns even more powerful than before.
He has admitted that one day he hopes to create a youth sports facility. It will be an endeavor to support local youth in fending against the negative impacts of violence and drugs.
Luvo Manyonga: Connections
Khomotso Mamburu, a netball player and LLB student, was the partner of Luvo Manyonga. Through social media, the couple frequently expressed their affection.
It’s unknown right now how their relationship is doing, though.
Additionally, Lindokhule Manyonga, who is 9 years old, is Luvo’s son. In an effort to save his son from falling into the same pitfalls he did, he dedicates each leap to him.
Luvo Manyonga: Online networking
Everyone enjoys using social media to stay in touch with the outside world in the digital age. Additionally, Luvo is active on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. But tragically, since his prohibition in 2020, his profiles have hardly been updated.
Facebook has 9.4k fans.
Twitter has 7,500 users.
24.2,000 Instagram followers
Luvo Manyonga: Salary
He has not had a lot of sponsorship deals because of his erratic career. Nike had previously sponsored him, but it’s unclear how things stand now that he’s been suspended.
Luvo was up in a family that experienced persistent financial hardship. Luvo was successful in sports and made some money, but he spent the majority of it on drugs.
He won 80,000 Rand in 2011 for his performances. However, as soon as his family started to depend on him financially, Luvo lost all of the money and even went into debt.
Coach Mario Smith had to support his family out of his own pocket because the athlete’s condition was so bad in order for him to concentrate exclusively on training.
Luvo Manyonga: FAQs
Will Luvo Manyonga play Tokyo Olympics?
Following the four years ban from the athletic committee, Luvo Manyonga has missed his shot at Tokyo Olympics and a chance to win Olympic gold.