Seven swimmers added their names to the provisional list of South African qualifiers for the 2018 Commonwealth Games on Monday, achieving the required times in their respective disciplines on day three of the national aquatics trials in Durban.
Approaching the midway stage of the gala, a total of 20 swimmers had met the standards, booking their places in the provisional SA squad for the Gold Coast Games in April. Tatjana Schoenmaker led the charge in the women’s 200m breaststroke final, with all three podium finishers dipping under the qualifying mark.
Touching the wall in 2:26.46, Schoenmaker won comfortably to secure the gold medal, and while silver medallist Kaylene Corbett (2:29.18) and bronze medallist Emily Visagie (2:29.46) were nearly three seconds off the pace, they both did enough. Marlies Ross was also in good form, coasting to victory in the women’s 200m individual medley in 2:17.33 to achieve the qualifying standard for the Commonwealth showpiece. On the men’s side, Olympic medallist Chad le Clos expanded his potential programme for the Games with another two qualifying performances.
Having already achieved the necessary time in the 200m freestyle at the weekend, Le Clos won double gold in the 200m butterfly, touching the wall in 1:58.01, and the 100m freestyle, covering the distance in 49.74. Eben Vorster earned the silver medal in 1:59.88 in the four-length butterfly contest, while Calvyn Justus (50.35) and Leith Shankland (50.51) also qualified for the Games in the 100m freestyle.
Justus was one of three swimmers who had qualified in more than one event for the multi-sport Games, having already qualified in the 100m backstroke over the weekend. The national swimming trials were set to come to a close at Kings Park Aquatics Centre on Friday.