Tatjana Schoenmaker Completes Breaststroke Double

Tatjana Schoenmaker secured the national 200m breaststroke title in the second fastest time in the world this year at the SA National Aquatic Championships in Gqeberha on Friday, 14 April 2023. Photo: Swimming SA / Supplied

Tatjana Schoenmaker secured the national 200m breaststroke title in the second fastest time in the world this year at the SA National Aquatic Championships in Gqeberha on Friday, 14 April 2023.

The world record holder and Olympic champion in the event cruised to victory in a time of 2:22.44 with her training partner, Kaylene Corbett, second in 2:25.40 – both A qualifying times for the Swimming World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan in July.

Schoenmaker admitted afterwards that the vocal crowd at the Newton Park Swimming Pool had her thinking she might be closer to her world record of 2:18.95, but she was nonetheless thrilled with the result.

“I was obviously hoping for a much faster time,” she said afterwards. “I think with the crowd going so crazy you assume you’re on a really good time, not that I’m not incredibly grateful for a 2:22 though. I think the excitement just made me think it was a lot faster but we’ll get there. It’s step-by-step. I think in 2021 before the Olympics I also swam a 2:22 in the heats so we’ll get there.”

Corbett’s morning time of 2:24.93 in the heats was quicker than her final, but both times were under the A qualifying mark.

“Obviously it’s really nice to get the time done in the morning. It just takes the pressure off for whatever is to come after that,” she said.

After securing the 200m freestyle title on the opening night of action on Thursday, Aimee Canny also successfully defended her 100m freestyle title. The 19-year-old finished in a time of 54.65, just missing out on the A qualification mark but nevertheless securing the title ahead of Rebecca Meder (54.88) and African record holder Erin Gallagher (55.09).

“I obviously would have liked to have gone a bit faster but where this race is in the gala – I’ve already had three tough days – I was happy with that time,” she said afterwards. “I went out quick. I was happy with the speed I went out in and I think I’ve just got to work on doing a bit better at the back end but it was a good race.”

Meder later went on to add to her haul, claiming the 400m individual medley title in a B qualifying time of 4:50.55.

Once again, swimmers with a disability also achieved A qualifying times for the 2023 Para Swimming World Championships in Manchester from 31 July to 6 August.

There were A qualifying times for visually impaired swimmers Alani Ferreira in the SB13 100m breaststroke (1:23.43) and Cornelle Leach in the SB12 100m breaststroke (1:31.52).

Swimming action continues at the Newton Park Swimming Pool in Gqeberha until Sunday, 16 April.

 

Photo 1 Caption: Tatjana Schoenmaker secured the national 200m breaststroke title in the second fastest time in the world this year at the SA National Aquatic Championships in Gqeberha on Friday, 14 April 2023. Photo: Swimming SA / Supplied

With editing by gsport

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