Khalaf Al Balawi Image Credit: Credit: Twitter

Manama: A 79-year-old Saudi man has become an overnight sensation for completing the 21-kilometre Half-Marathon which took place on Saturday.

Khalaf Al Balawi was awarded Saudi Riyals 100,000 by Turki Al Al Shaikh, Board Chairman of the General Sports Authority and President of the Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee, for his “exceptional bravery and his laudable commitment to finishing the race”.

Social media users hailed Al Balawi as a beacon of determination and a shining example for young people.

“He fully deserves the recognition by the people in charge of sports and we hope that we will see him compete in the years to come,” one user posted.

The premiere of the Half-Marathon included three categories — Professional (21 km), Amateur (8 km), and Fun Run (4 km).

Hundreds of people took part in the races that started and ended at King Saud University and the top ten in each category were given prizes and rewards.