Team SA Top Perform at Para Swimming Champs

Cornelle Leach top performed at the 2022 World Para Swimming Championship in Madeira, Portugal. Photo: Cornelle Leach (Instagram)

Team South Africa’s para swimmers went on to set new South African and African records at the 2022 World Para Swimming Championships in Madeira, Portugal.

The competition began on Sunday, 12 June and will conclude on Saturday, 18 June.

On Wednesday, Kat Swanepoel and Cornelle Leach added more medals to South Africa’s tally, both winning bronze in their respective categories.

Leach claimed third place in the women’s SB12 100M breaststroke with a time of 1:28.60 as she produced her third African record of the week at the championship.

Although it looked like Leach was going to grab silver behind Brazil’s Maria Santiago Gomes, she was caught by Singapore’s Sophie Soon in the last 50m, leaving her with no choice but to settle with a third-place finish.

In the women’s S4 50m backstroke, Swanepoel secured bronze in a time of 51.80, just 0.75 seconds behind Germany’s Tina Scholtz who took home the silver medal and Greece’s Alexandra Stamatopoulou who grabbed gold in 49.97sec.

Earlier in the week, Swanepoel produced a career defining performance when she grabbed silver in the women’s SM4 150m breaststroke final behind Spain’s Martha Fernandez.

Swanepoel who had a difficult past few months with her health, managed to produce a stellar performance with a career best of 3:04.04, more than eight seconds faster than her championships qualifying time of 3:12.37.

While Leach was also in a record-breaking mindset in the early stages of the championships as she set an SA and African record in the women’s S12 50m freestyle.

The 23-year-old who finished seventh with a time of 31.36 to qualify for the evening’s final, went into the competition with a previous time of 31.67, she was 0.31sec faster to set a new national and continental best.

On the same day Leach finished sixth with a time of 30.62, which was 0.74sec faster than her time in the morning securing her second SA and African record.

Alani Ferreira also joined Team SA on Day 3, finishing fifth in the women’s S13 100M freestyle final with a time of 1:07.71 to set another African record.

 

Team SA’s South African/African Records:

Women’s S4 50m backstroke (African record only): Kat Swanepoel (51.80)

Women’s SB3 50m breaststroke (x2): Kat Swanepoel (1:00.98 and 1:00.10)

Women’s S12 50m freestyle (x2): Cornelle Leach (31.36 and 30.62)

Women’s SB12 100M breaststroke (African record only): Cornelle Leach (1:28.60)

Women’s S13 100m freestyle (African record only): Alani Ferreira (1:07.71)

Women’s S4 100m freestyle (x2): Kat Swanepoel (1:43.50 and 1:40.37)

Women’s S13 100m butterfly (x2): Alani Ferreira (1:18.56 and 1:18.17)

Women’s S13 100m breaststroke: Alani Ferreira (1:22.18)

Women’s SM4 150m breaststroke: Kat Swanepoel (3:04.04)

Medals

Silver

Women’s SM4 150m breaststroke: Kat Swanepoel (3:04.04)

Bronze

Women’s S4 50m backstroke (African record only): Kat Swanepoel (51.80)

Women’s SB12 100M breaststroke (African record only): Cornelle Leach (1:28.60)

 

Photo 1 Caption: Cornelle Leach top performed at the 2022 World Para Swimming Championship in Madeira, Portugal. Photo: Cornelle Leach (Instagram)

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