14 years of hard work paid off in 58.46 seconds – Van der Burgh

2012-07-30 16:00

Team SA’s gold medal winner and world record holder Cameron van der Burgh says he woke up after winning gold at the Olympics feeling like he had a new baby.

Speaking to the media at the South African Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc) base in Kensington, London, this afternoon, the 24-year-old said: “I am more than thrilled as this is one medal I have been wishing for. It was hard work though ... 14 years of hard work paid off in 58.46 seconds.”

Van der Burgh, who swam an Olympic record 58.83 seconds during the 100m breaststroke semi-finals, clinched a world mark in claiming Team SA’s first medal at the Olympics yesterday.

It was also Africa’s first collection at the Games, which started three days ago.

This feat has earned him a place in the South African swimming annals as the first men’s individual medal in the pool event.

“The medal is everything to me and nothing can be compared to the feeling that I will carry on for the whole of my life.”

An ardent Arsenal fan, Van der Burgh immediately signed up for a tour of the Emirates, the home of his favourite English Premiership club.

“I really enjoy my football and I support Arsenal which unfortunately breaks my heart sometimes.”

Van der Burgh is the first to tap his fingers into to the R6 million incentive pot as his win has guaranteed him R500 000, with R100 000 going to his coach, Dirk Lange.

» Follow me on Twitter @DanieMothowagae. Follow City Press: @City_Press

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.