By Frisco Rosso
It’s definitely been a week to remember for South African Olympians at London 2012 as they added two more gold medals to the country’s tally.
Aquatic speedster Chad le Clos snatched gold from reigning butterfly champion Michael Phelps by just 0.58 seconds on Tuesday, winning the men’s 200m butterfly in a time of 1:52.96. Pretty damn slick, and not something the bookmakers nor Le Clos himself were expecting judging by his initial expression at the end of the race.
Phelps was less than enthused by the prospect of settling for silver but there was some hefty consolation for the American as he became the most decorated athlete in Olympic history with 19 medals, surpassing Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina. Yesterday he extended his medal count still further by winning his 20th Olympic medal and 16th Olympic gold after coming first in the 200m individual medley. Not too shabby at all.
Both Le Clos and Phelps qualified for the final of the 100m butterfly last night and will face off for medal glory once again tonight.
The SA gold rush continued yesterday as our awesome foursome rowing team of Lawrence Ndlovu, Matthew Brittain, John Smith and James Thompson won the men’s coxless lightweight fours to give South Africa a third gold medal. The South Africans clinched the race in a time of 6:02.84 while Great Britain bagged silver 0.25 seconds behind and Denmark cruised in for bronze just 0.07 further back.
Fantastic effort and one all South Africans are eternally grateful for. Team SA are doing our country proud.
Elsewhere, Roland Schoeman made it through to the 50m freestyle final and will undoubtedly be going for gold later this evening.
Unfortunately it wasn’t all good news for the SA crew yesterday as Karin Prinsloo was unable to advance to the women’s 200m backstroke final, finishing eighth in the semifinal while medal hopeful Suzaan van Biljon came seventh in the 200m breaststroke despite a promising start. Nevertheless, SA can be proud of their epic achievements in making it as far as they did. Kudos all round.
With more tension than your mother’s suspension, I am Frisco Rosso. I’m likely to deliver a few lines worth at any given moment regarding film, music, sport, books and anything morally unsound that strikes a blow between the eyes in the name of entertainment.