Every South African a Swimmer

Le Clos back racing at Durban Grand Prix after hospital stay

Le Clos back racing at Durban Grand Prix after hospital stay
Friday, 18 February 2022 - Chad le Clos made a return to competition at the second meet of the SA Grand Prix series in Durban on Friday after a recent trip to hospital with bronchitis.

The 2012 Olympic champion revealed that he had spent three nights in hospital and only returned to training just over 10 days ago.

With such a troubled build-up to the meet, including numerous hours spent in doctors and specialists offices this week, Le Clos was thrilled to win his 100m freestyle heat in 49.78. 17-year-old Pieter Coetzé was second fastest in 50.55 seconds before recording the quickest time of the night in the 100m backstroke heats in 54.72.

Le Clos had to settle for the second fastest time in the 200m butterfly heats in 2:03.37 behind Ross Hartigan who finished top in 2:02.88.

The 29-year-old was then back in the pool later in the evening for the 50m butterfly heats where he was edged out by Coetzé. The teenager finished with the quickest time of 24.85 seconds, to Le Clos’s 25.26.

“I was very happy with tonight. It was a very good swim I guess under the circumstances. It’s been a bit of a tough time, being in hospital two weeks ago,” said Le Clos after the evening’s efforts.

“I’m still struggling with a bit of sinus but 49.7 [for the 100m freestyle] was pretty decent. It’s definitely not what I expected so we’ll see how we go tomorrow. The 200 fly I’ve scratched because obviously I haven’t trained as much as I would have liked to. But all in all, I’m pretty happy… Onwards and upwards.”

Le Clos also praised the Durban crowd for their support.

“It was nice to swim in front of the support. There were a lot of fans out tonight, a lot of young kids, a lot of pictures being taken and that’s great for the sport. It’s great to have that energy back. We haven’t had that in a long time. The atmosphere tonight was better than the Olympics.”

Meanwhile, Rebecca Meder looked to be picking up where she left off after claiming six titles at the last Grand Prix event in Mpumalanga. The 19-year-old Olympian powered to the quickest time in the 200m freestyle heats in 2:00.93 and the 100m butterfly in 1:01.42. She then went on to top the times in the 200m individual medley heats in 2:15.07.

Fellow Olympian Emma Chelius was quickest in the 50m freestyle, touching the wall in 25.62.

Upcoming breaststroker Lara van Niekerk showed her intentions, setting the quickest time of the night in the 100m breaststroke in 1:06.52.

Grand Prix action continues in Durban with the first of the finals on Saturday.


For further information please contact:

Swimming South Africa’s Marketing Coordinator

Mmathapelo Phale

011 404 2480 / 074 363 0001

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.