South Africa gets first Olympic gold in men's 100-meter breaststroke
July 30, 2012
South African swimmer Cameron van der Burgh recently won the 100-meter breaststroke at the London Olympics. This is the first time a man from South Africa has won the gold in an individual swimming event, according to The Associated Press. Not only did Van der Burgh take home the nation's first gold medal, he also set the world record, with a time of 58.46 seconds.
"Tonight, as I came in, I said to myself, 'A man can change his stars, you can write your own destiny tonight.' I had my chance and I took it," Van der Burgh told Reuters Africa.
The victory in the pool was a major success for South Africa's swim team, as they did not place at all during the Beijing Olympics in 2008, Reuters reports. The only other individual swimmer to get the gold was Penny Heyns, which won the 100 and 200 breaststrokes in Atlanta in 1996. During the Athens Games in 2004, the men's swimming team won the 4x100 freestyle relay, as well.