It was Silver for South African swimmer Tatjana Schoenmaker in the women’s 100m breaststroke at the Tokyo Olympics in Japan today, while Bianca Buidendag continued her fine form when she reached the final of the women’s surfing… and is now guaranteed Gold or Silver. And SA won their Rugby 7s pool.
Tatjana Schoenmaker won the silver medal in 1:05,22, with the gold medal going to 17-year-old American Lydia Jacoby. Schoenmaker, who had been the fastest qualifier and ha lowered the Olympic record to 1:04.82 in the heats, had led at halfway. She touched the wall in 1:05.22 with the American finishing strongly to win gold in 1:04.95.
Men’s butterfly, semi-final: Chad le Clos, the 2012 Olympic champion, had suffered a scare in the heats, taking the last qualifying spot for the semi-finals. He competed in the first of the two semi-finals, from lane eight and made sure of reaching the final with a start-to-finish win in 1:55.06. It was a dominant performance from the South African who admitted to not getting it right in the heats but he made amends in the semi-finals. He qualified third fastest overall.
Women’s competition: Bianca Buitendag had claimed the scalp of seven-time world champion Stephanie Gilmore from Australia in Monday’s third round and here she beat the 23-year-old Portuguese Yolanda Hopkins for a place in the semi-finals. In the semis she saw off Caroline Marks of the USA, 11.00 to 3.67. She’s guaranteed gold or silver later.
The men’s rugby Sevens topped their pool, beating the USA 17 – 12. South Africa made it a clean sweep of wins in their group (Men’s Pool C) when they beat the USA 17-12 on Tuesday, having beaten Ireland and Kenya the day before.
Women’s Individual, final: A big field of 56 entered, but only 33 finished. While Bermuda’s Flora Duffy, the pre-race favourite, won the race in conditions made difficult due to the overnight rain, Simone Ackerman fared best of the two Team SA athletes. She finished in 17th position, 5min 38sec off the winner. Gill Sanders recorded a DNF after being lapped and not making the transition zone in time.
Men’s Group A, South Africa 3 USA 20: In South Africa’s opening game they went down 21-2 to world No7 Italy and here, in what is their first Olympics since 1960, the South Africans competed well against the world No9s. South Africa trailed 0-3 after the first quarter, then 1-12 after the second, then 2-15 in a productive third quarter, and 3-20 at the end.
Compiled by Gary Lemke
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