Shock after robbers try to saw off SA athlete's legs

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Triathlete Mhlengi Gwala was brutally attacked in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Triathlete Mhlengi Gwala was brutally attacked in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

web_photo_mhlengi_gwala_070318

Triathlete Mhlengi Gwala was brutally attacked in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Triathlete Mhlengi Gwala was brutally attacked in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

DURBAN - A South African athlete nearly had his legs sawn off when he was attacked by a group of men while training in the early hours of Tuesday morning, media reports said. 

Triathlete Mhlengi Gwala (26) reportedly offered his attackers his cellphone and money, but they pushed him down and tried to hack off his legs with a blunt chainsaw. 

The incident was confirmed on Twitter by Gwala&39;s fellow athlete, Henri Schoeman.

 

 

Gwala, who is seen as a very promising athlete, will be undergoing leg surgery.

Schoeman said there is a lot of damage to Gwala&39;s nerves and tendons. 

"We&39;re all praying he&39;ll make a full recovery... I just want to wish him the best recovery and we are all standing behind him. We also need to make a stand so that we can cycle safely here in South Africa because we all know it is very dangerous (for cyclists) at the moment," said Schoeman.

The motive for the attack is not known. 

Many people expressed their shock and support on Twitter.