Cameron's second medal | SASCOC - SASCOC

Cameron’s second medal

It wasn’t over an Olympic distance but our top swimmer right now, Cameron van der Burgh has made another emphatic statement ahead of the London Olympic Games later this year, writes Mark Etheridge.

Competing in the first leg of the Mare Nostrum series in Barcelona, Spain he blitzed to a 27.77 second win in the 50-metre breaststroke final on Sunday.

The current world recordholder (26.67sec at World Championships three years ago), Van der Burgh beat Brazil’s Felipe Lima into silver. Lima clocked 27.92 for second. Van der Burgh still holds the meeting record at this event with his 27.56sec swum last year. Third in the same race was a second South African, Giulio Zorzi, in a time of 27.95.

Van der Burgh was part of a number of elite South African swimmers preparing for the Olympics and as team manager Anton Jordaan said: “Participation is more important than winning at this stage of our preparations.”

But this clearly hasn’t stopped the swimmers from excelling. On Saturday, Van der Burgh had won the men’s 100m breaststroke final.

His weekend efforts earned Van der Burgh the men’s swimmer of the event.

Karin Prinsloo, who set a national record in the 100m backstroke on Saturday, took silver in the 200m backstroke final. She clocked 2:11.73, behind Canadian Sinead Russell’s 2:11.20.

Also in action was breaststroke ace Suzaan van Biljon. She took fifth in the A final, touching in 1:10.15 behind Spain’s’ Marina Garcia (1:09:19).

Then Charl Crous, who like all of our above swimmers, has already qualified for the Olympics, took second in the men’s 100m backstroke, his time 55.56 and good for silver. In the same race, Darren Murray was seventh in 56.24.

In the 1500m freestyle final our Myles Brown swam a 15:22.51 for second, as France’s Sebastien Roualt won in 15:1791.

Next up for the South African squad is the second leg of the series and the team travel to Canet by bus on Monday.