THE South African swimming team concluded the 15th FINA World Championships in Barcelona tonight with a total of five medals (three gold, a silver and a bronze).
Bettering their tally by two medals from the competition in 2011, Chad le Clos won a phenomenal double gold in both the 100 and 200m butterfly events, while Cameron van der Burgh also claimed two medals, a silver in the 100m breaststroke and gold in the 50m breaststroke.
The bronze medal for Mzansi came by way of Giulio Zorzi, who finished behind Van der Burgh in the 50m breaststroke.
On the final day of competition tonight, Michael Meyer finished 17th in 4:21.17 and Rene Warnes in 22nd with a time of 4:48.11 in their respective 400m individual medley events.
The 4 x 100m medley relay team of Cameron van der Burgh, Darren Murray, Chad le Clos and Leith Shankland ended 11th in the morning heats, clocking 3:36.22, while the ladies quartet of Jessica Ashley Cooper, Tara Nicholas, Marne Erasmus and Karin Prinsloo also finished 11th with a time of 4:06.46.
“It has been quite hard coming from the Olympic Games and build up again for the World Championships. This is the case for all participating teams, which is evident by some of the upsets at this meet. We are on track though for the 2016 Olympic Games which is our main target competition.” said Graham Hill, Swimming SA National Head Coach.
The Chief Executive Officer of Swimming SA, Shaun Adriaanse said: “We are happy with the performance of the team. As expected, we saw excellent performances from Chad and Cameron and a surprise performance from Giulio.
“This will help to maintain our momentum towards 2016 and hopefully we will see improvement from the swimmers who participated and learned from the 2013 FINA World Championships, as part of the 2016 campaign.” concluded Adriaanse.
There will be no rest for the South African swimming team as they head straight to the FINA World Cup Series which begins in Eindhoven, Netherlands, on August 7 and 8, Berlin, Germany, on August 10 and 11.