Cavendish claims 4th win

2008-07-19 00:00

The annual Speedo Prestige Swimming Tournament lived up to expectations with outstanding performances from the locally-trained Olympians at the King’s Park pool in Durban last weekend.

Lize-Mari Retief made the most waves in the women’s 50 metre butterfly where she broke her own SA and Africa records set in April, stopping the watches in a fast 26,36 seconds to prove she is in outstanding form on the eve of the Olympics.

Retief came close again in the 50 metre backstroke where she clocked a 29,19 seconds — just 0,01 seconds short of the Africa mark held by Charlene Wittstock. Retief also won the 100 metre freestyle in a new meet record of 56,53 seconds.

Gerhard Zandberg was also showing solid form with victories in the men’s 50 metre freestyle (22,42 seconds), 100 metre freestyle (50,82 seconds) and the 50 metre backstroke (25,31 seconds). George du Rand was really unlucky in the men’s 200 metre backstroke to miss his own Africa record of 1:58,81 after clocking a magnificent 1:59,04 out on his own.

Other Olympians who showed they are ready for next month were:

•Suzaan van Biljon: 100 metre breaststroke in 1:08,25 and 200 metre breaststroke in 2:31,73

•Mandy Loots: 100 metre butterfly in 59,61 seconds and 200 metre butterfly in 2:13,61

•William Diering: 200 metre breaststroke in 2:14,46

•Melissa Corfe: 100 metre freestyle in 58,48sec; 200 metre freestyle in 2:01,25; 400 metre freestyle in 4:15,03 and the 200 metre backstroke in 2:13,20 (all meet records).

For the Pietermaritzburg swimmers, Josh Stegan and Jamie Reynolds won in the boys’ and girls’ U10 age group.

Stegan set four new records and won seven gold medals and two silver medals. His victories were:

• 50 metre fly 36,30 (rec); • 50 metre backstroke 37,55 (rec); • 50 metre breast 42,69 (rec); • 100 metre butterfly 1:19,57; • 200 metre IM 2:49,69 (rec); • 100 metre backstroke 1:20,93; • 100 metre breaststroke 1:32,32 and was runner-up in the 50 metre and 100 metre freestyle events.

Reynolds set five new meet records in six victories and won three silver medals. Her records were:

•50 metre butterfly in 35,15 (rec); •50 metre breaststroke 41,13 (rec);

• 50 metre freestyle 31,76 (rec); • 100 metre butterfly 1:22,52 (rec);

• 200 metre IM 2:54,74; 100 metre freestyle 1:10,68 (rec), while her second places were in the 50 and 100 metre backstroke events.

Other local victories came from Mark Hunter in the boys 11/12 years’ section and Kerry Hunter in the girls’ 10 and under section.

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