Every South African a Swimmer

Day 1 of the Para World Swimming Championships in London

Day 1 of the Para World Swimming Championships in London
London, Tuesday, 10th September 2019 - A five-member South African team was in final form on the first day of the World Para Swimming Championships in London setting new continental records on Monday.

Three swimmers spearheaded by Commonwealth Games silver medallist Christian Sadie featured in the finals where they pushed for medals.

Sadie came painstakingly close to a podium spot finishing in fifth place in the men’s 50m butterfly S7 final.  He hit the wall in fifth place in a new African record of 30.59 seconds, chopping 0.15s off the mark he set in the morning.

The top three swimmers all dipped under 30 seconds with American Evan Austin claiming the title in a time of 29.71.

In the men’s 100m backstroke S12 final, Franco Smit clocked a new continental record touching in seventh place in a time of 1:04:40.  Smit produced the good in the final swimming more than 30 seconds faster than in the morning.

Hendrik van der Merwe demonstrated his form at the championships racing to a new personal best in the men’s 100m breaststroke SB5 event.  In the evening’s final, Van der Merwe took more than a second off his new lifetime best from the morning finishing eighth in a time of 1:42:21.

Alani Ferreira, the only female member of the team missed out on a spot in the final despite racing to a new continental record in the women’s 400m S13 finishing the heat in 10th place with a time of 5:05:55.

Hendri Herbst came close to a spot in the men’s 50m freestyle S11 finishing in ninth place with a time of 27:58.

The World Para Swimming Championships is held in the same venue as the London 2012 Paralympics and is a crucial qualifier for the Tokyo 2020 Games. The championships will run until September 15.

SA IPC Swimming Team in London are:


Hendrik van der Merwe

Christian Sadie

Hendri Herbst

Franco Smi


Alani Ferreira


For further information please contact:

Swimming South Africa

011 404 2480

Swimming South Africa is the governing body of aquatics in South Africa.

Its objective is to encourage the practice of aquatic disciplines for all in South Africa with the purpose of promoting swimming as a life skill through Learn To Swim programmes; providing healthy exercise to South Africans of all ages and races; recruiting recreational swimmers to compete in the various competitions; and promoting competition and athlete development to the highest level. Swimming South Africa is kindly supported by SASCOC, National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund, Arena, Sport & Recreation SA and Rand Water.