South African Triathlete Attacked by Men Who Tried to Cut Off His Legs with Chainsaw
Absolutely shocking and disgusting report out of South Africa today, where triathlete Mhlengi Gwala was allegedly the victim of a brutal chainsaw attack.
According to the Sunday Times, Gwala, 27, was training on a training ride near the University of KwaZulu-Nata outside the city Durban on Tuesday when a group of three men grabbed him off his bike, pulled him into some nearby bushes, and apparently tried to cut off his legs with a chainsaw.
News of the attack was first reported on Twitter by fellow South African triathlete Henri Schoeman, who won bronze at the 2016 Summer Olympics:
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
The attackers ultimately gave up on their attempted amputation and fled the scene. Gwala then managed to “drag himself to safety.”
The motive for the horrendous attack is unknown at this point, as is Gwala’s medical prognosis. However, he is reported to be “alive and talking,” which suggests he is in stable condition.
“We don’t yet know how far they went in‚ whether they were trying to cut it off‚ or what the circumstances are,” explained Dennis Jackson, director of South Africa’s Elite Athlete Development program. “All we know is that Mhlengi is alive‚ he is talking and that he is under medical care. We don’t have the whole story as yet.”
Jackson went on to tell the Sunday Times that it is unclear why the attackers suddenly stopped and left.
“Mhlengi doesn’t know why they left. He dragged himself out of the bush onto the road and a private security car picked him up and took him to the nearest hospital.” Jackson said. “From what we understand‚ he is in a cast. What the damage to his leg is‚ we will know in the next few days I guess.”
Hat Tip – [Deadspin]